Far-right groups Scottish Dawn and NS131 to be banned under terror laws

Two far-right groups are to be banned after they were identified as aliases of the neo-Nazi group National Action (NA) which has been classified as a terrorist organisation.

An order also proscribing Scottish Dawn and NS131 (National Socialist Anti-Capitalist Action) under terror laws will come into effect on Friday.

Scottish Dawn which describes itself as "a patriotic society for the defence of our race and nation" was established earlier this year.

It was set up shortly after NA became the first neo-Nazi organisation in Britain to be banned under terrorism laws in December 2016.

ITV News previously reported that Scottish Dawn faced being outlawed earlier this month.

NS131 has also been identified as an alternative name National Action has used.

NA was outlawed following the Home Office's assessment that it was "concerned in terrorism".

Its members had celebrated the murder of Labour MP Jo Cox, who was killed by right-wing extremist Thomas Mair, in 2016.

The group, which was established in 2013, had also adopted the words of her killer, “death to traitors, freedom for Britain”, as its slogan.

The neo-Nazi's online propaganda material also featured violent images and language.

It also suggested Mrs Cox's murder and the attack on a gay nightclub in Florida, in which 49 people were killed in June 2016, be emulated.

Jo Cox was killed by a right-wing extremist in June 2016. Credit: PA

Addressing the further ban of the two extremist groups, Home Secretary Amber Rudd said she would not let NA "masquerade" under alternative names.

“National Action is a vile racist, homophobic and anti-Semitic group which glorifies violence and stirs up hatred while promoting their poisonous ideology and I will not allow them to masquerade under different names.

“By extending the proscription of National Action, we are halting the spread of a poisonous ideology and stopping its membership from growing - protecting those who could be at risk of radicalisation.

She added: "Our priority as Government will always be to maintain the safety and security of families and communities across the United Kingdom and we will continue to identify and ban any terrorist group which threatens this, whatever their ideology.”

Home Secretary Amber Rudd banned National Action in December. Credit: PA

In the official list of proscribed groups, National Action as ''virulently racist, anti-Semitic and homophobic''.

On Wednesday, 11 men were arrested across England and Wales as part of an investigation into National Action.

What is a proscribed organisation?

An organisation that the Home Secretary believes is concerned in terrorism can be proscribed under the Terrorism Act 2000 if it is proportionate to do so. This means that the organisation commits or participates in acts of terrorism, prepares for terrorism, promotes or encourages terrorism or is otherwise concerned in terrorism.

When deciding if it is proportionate to proscribe an organisation, the Home Secretary will consider several factors, including the nature and scale of its activities, the specific threat it poses to the UK and British nationals overseas and the extent of its presence in the UK.

Being a member of or inviting support for a proscribed organisation is a criminal offence carrying a sentence of up to 10 years in prison.

The Home Secretary can issue an order that an alternative name or alias is to be treated as another name for a banned organisation.