Fears over right-wing speakers invited to EDL march

A former member of the Royal Artillery lays flowers close to the scene where drummer Lee Rigby was murdered. Credit: Sean Dempsey/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Fears have been raised over two "incendiary" right-wing American speakers invited to an English Defence League march that will end where soldier Drummer Lee Rigby was murdered.

Chairman of the Home Affairs Select Committee Keith Vaz has written to the Home Secretary calling for Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer to be banned from entering the country. The far-right group is planning a march to mark Armed Forces Day on June 29, ending in Woolwich.

It has called on all its members to join for the last mile of the walk that afternoon, and Mr Spencer, who founded the website Jihad Watch, and Ms Geller, who leads the American Freedom Defence Initiative, are among three guest speakers.

The third is Anders Gravers, from Stop the Islamisation of Denmark.

Mr Vaz said: "I am alarmed that the EDL is planning this type of march in Woolwich. It is clear that the location, motivation and attendees at this march will incite hatred.

"Adding incendiary speakers such as Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer just fuels the fire. Before we have to pay the costs for the extra policing required for this demonstration the Home Secretary should consider using her discretion to ban these two speakers from entering the country."

"A ban should be enforced properly and physically stop people entering our borders."Scotland Yard said that it was aware of the march and would have an appropriate policing plan in place.

Police officers stand in front of EDL demonstrators on Whitehall near to outside Downing Street in May Credit: Sean Dempsey/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Last month British National Party leader Nick Griffin was stopped from attending a march in Woolwich on the grounds that it would inflame community tensions.

Instead members of the right wing party marched at Westminster, sparking clashes with rival anti-fascist protesters.