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We stand in solidarity with youth fighting for democracy in Uganda – Your Fight is Our Fight!

Movement for Justice By Any Means Necessary (MFJ) in Britain sends greetings and solidarity to the youth of Uganda who are defying the police and troops of a corrupt dictator, and fighting for freedom and democracy. The courage and determination you have demonstrated, week after week, in the face of mass arrests, beatings, tear gas, live ammunition, kidnapping and murder is an inspiration to youth around the world who are demanding real change and hope for the future.

MFJ is an organisation that fights by any means necessary to defeat racism and racists and end the British government’s persecution of immigrants and refugees. Most of us are refugees from countries in Africa – many of us are from Uganda. We are building an integrated mass movement that is led by immigrants and youth, and fights for equal rights and the end of poverty for everyone who lives in Britain. We recognise that our struggles are international.

Your movement that is rising up in response to the election campaign of Kyagulanyi Robert and the National Unity Platform (NUP) is already changing Uganda. Your power is on the streets and it has transformed this election campaign. It is replacing cynicism with hope. The corrupt, 35-year old regime of President Yoweri Museveni is in crisis.

Your victory will resound across Africa, among other youthful populations that are impoverished by exploitation and living under corrupt, repressive governments. Like you, we long to see Africa become a continent that young people do not have to leave in order to find safety and build a better life. Your victory will inspire youth everywhere who are fighting racism, poverty and repression – in Europe, Asia and the Americas. Everywhere, youth are leading the struggle against rich and powerful rulers who want to suffocate our hopes and dreams.

Museveni’s defeat is assured, and whether or not he accepts defeat it will be the start of a new chapter in the history of Uganda. You must write that new chapter. An election can only be a starting point in the fight for a New Uganda. We are confident that you will recognise your own power and that, whatever happens on 14th January, you will continue to build your movement until you win.

The struggle is between the poor and the rich

Right now the police and military are trying to disrupt Kyagulanyi’s campaign and your rallies every single day. They are defending a corrupt system – not just defending the Museveni family and its shrinking circle of allies. Your movement is a threat to the interests of many rich, powerful and corrupt people in Uganda – and your victory will be seen as a threat by the foreign corporations and banks that are exploiting Uganda. They all fear People Power – your power.

Kyagulanyi and the NUP have an ambitious programme of reforms. They plan to eradicate corruption and the abuses of power that rob the poor and oppressed of their rights, their land and their livelihoods. They aim to revive the agricultural co-operatives that were destroyed by Museveni’s privatisation policies, retrieve stolen money and relieve Uganda from its mounting burden of foreign debt. However, they will face enormous resistance from individuals and corporations (Ugandan and foreign) who grew rich under Museveni and now control most of the state machine and a large part of the economy. They will use those positions to protect their wealth and privilege and put immense pressure on an NUP government.

Your power, as a mass movement on the streets and in your communities, is the only force that can defeat the rich and powerful. The land grabbers and the people who steal aid money have never bothered about the laws, and they are ready to ignore the will of the electorate. The only force that will defeat them is the united struggle of Uganda’s poor and oppressed against all their exploiters and oppressors. Defeating the sabotage by the rich, corrupt groups that have thrived under Museveni’s ‘National Resistance Movement’ (NRM) will inevitably mean extending the NUP’s present plans for reform.

Take back the stolen land

A key issue will be the land and the ‘land grabbing.’ 80% of Uganda’s people, including many of the poorest and most oppressed, live in the rural districts and depend on the land. This is about their rights and welfare. It is a national scandal that officials, generals, politicians and powerful figures in the NRM have been able to seize vast areas of farmland, forests, wetlands and fisheries and evict many thousands of small farmers. This stolen land and the diverted water courses must be taken back from the land grabbers and from their partners-in-crime – the international agribusiness corporations that have benefitted enormously from this theft. The land must be returned to the people – by mass occupations where necessary. There should be no question of compensating the thieves for the loss of stolen property.

Land that is used for agriculture or pasture should be returned to the evicted small farmers or, where appropriate, developed as state farms under the democratic control of farm workers. Decisions about the recovery, redistribution and use of land should be made and carried out democratically, by mass assemblies and locally elected committees of small farmers, landless farmers and farm workers.

That will be a powerful blow against the small minority that grew rich under Museveni. It will assure the poor and oppressed in rural areas that the promise of change is real. It will be a strong basis for restoring the farmers’ co-operatives, expanding education in the countryside, improving conditions for the majority of women in Uganda and feeding a growing population. It will lift up the whole of Ugandan society and advance Uganda’s real independence from the world’s richest and most powerful countries.

The fight for equality and democracy

The NUP has extensive plans to attack discrimination in order to create greater equality. This ambition reflects the growing thirst for social change in Uganda. It runs through the NUP’s election manifesto, dealing with the rights of children and youth, ending child marriage, establishing first-language education in primary schools for all Uganda’s communities, and especially in the extensive plans to combat gender inequality and improve the position of Uganda’s women. A radical, democratic solution to the land question that reduces rural poverty will be the material basis for the success of these plans.

However, these plans do not challenge the discrimination and persecution of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals & transexuals (LGBT) that has become the biggest political weapon of Museveni and his allies. The NRM relies on anti-gay prejudice in the same way that Donald Trump and the British government rely on racism. All those rulers are making life harder for the mass of the people who they exploit and oppress. They need to put the blame for the problems they create onto some minority group, persecute that group, and try to keep poor people divided.

In Uganda and across Africa, youth are the growing and increasingly rebellious majority of society. The old rulers like Museveni have nothing to offer them. Anti-gay campaigns that condemn different ways of expressing love and sexuality, along with policies that impose a conservative view of the position of women (like the Pornography Act) are designed to restrict and control the rebelliousness and dynamism of youth. 

Many of us in MFJ had to leave Uganda and other countries because we suffered torture and threats to our lives as LGBT people. That experience is a big part of what makes us the most determined fighters against racism in Britain – and it is why we passionately support the fight for democracy by Uganda’s youth, why we weep as we watch the persecution of Kyagulanyi and the murder of his supporters.

Museveni will continue to use the weapon of anti-gay prejudice to cling to power and undermine the fight for democracy. We call on the youth of Uganda to challenge the anti-gay policies and recognise your country’s brave fighters for LGBT equality. Demand the abolition of all anti-gay laws.

Youth are the key to progress & real independence in Uganda & Africa

We are confident that a challenge to this prejudice will be successful because Uganda has one of the most youthful populations in the world, and around the world young people are the driving force for change, ready to reject old prejudices and embrace freedom for themselves and for others. And because youth are so important to Uganda’s future, we believe the voting age should be reduced to 16. That will ensure that the majority of the population is able to vote.

The collective power of Uganda’s youth, YOUR movement, will be central to the success of the struggles ahead: protecting the election; driving the dictator and his allies from their positions of power; reclaiming the looted land, property and money; establishing quality education and health care for every Ugandan. Your battles will and MUST inspire millions of young, poor and oppressed people across Africa and beyond, because every country in Africa faces similar problems and the same enemies. This will be vital in the battle to throw off the cruel burden of foreign debt that is such a huge obstacle to progress and equality in all the world’s poorest countries. In order to win, your movement must become international.

We stand with you in this fight. To quote from the conclusion of MFJ’s “Pledge for young leaders of the new integrated, independent, civil & immigrant rights movement:”

“We Pledge to the millions of oppressed people around the world, most of whom we will never know but all of whom we regard as our brothers and sisters, that we will fight for freedom, equality and the right of all of us to democratically decide the future of each of our own nations…. Your blood is our blood. Your struggle for freedom is our struggle for freedom. Your dreams and hopes echo in our hearts and minds. The borders that separate us will not divide us…. We can, if we act, create a new society in which the needs of humanity come before the enrichment of a few and… human beings can finally think, love and socialise as equals while protecting and realising the great potential of both human beings and all that inhabit this earth.”

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PRESS RELEASE: MFJ report on the treatment of cross Channel refugees in repurposed Yarl’s Wood highlights lack of access to legal advice and failure to identify victims of trafficking and torture

First insight into new regime in Yarl’s Wood detention centre since its conversion into a short term holding facility for cross channel refugees. Report highlights lack of access to legal advice and failure to identify victims of trafficking and torture.

Since August 2020 there have been no more women detained in Yarl’s Wood and the Home Office confirmed that its small short term holding facility was expanded to process cross channel refugees[1].

The report we release today is the first public insight into the new regime and is the result of four weeks of discussions with 20 refugees who were detained in Yarl’s Wood during September 2020.  

Over half of those we spoke to had been victims of torture or trafficking; many had been enslaved in Libya and subject to brutal torture, forced labour and rape. They spent 5-7 days in Yarl’s Wood[2].

During this time, no one was provided with access to a solicitor; the Detention Duty Advice Scheme (DDAS) was not functioning. Some were given a list of numbers after several days but lack of phone credit and language difficulties meant it was impossible for them to secure representation.

People are moved to other accommodation with no representation, no support, and in many cases with no phones. They are dispersed to areas where charities are overstretched and where legal aid immigration solicitors either have no capacity or are few and far between. Language difficulties and lack of phone or phone credit makes it impossible for many to find the legal advice, medical help and support they need.

Home Secretary Priti Patel and the Home Office have been vocally critical of ‘last minute legal claims’ which ‘frustrate’ removals; this report reveals the truth, that people are denied legal advice at an early stage and victims of trafficking are not being identified. For these refugees a ‘last minute claim,’ when they are taken to Brook House and given notice of a flight, is the only way to stop what would be an unlawful removal.

“The UK’s stated commitment to Human Rights is being trampled on by Priti Patel, the UK Home Office and this government. They have designed a Dover to Deportation pipeline, at every stage frustrating refugees’ ability to get the legal advice, care and support they need. Yarl’s Wood is but one link in that pipeline, but it is a crucial one. Had those asylum seekers been able to access legal representation at the earliest opportunity they would not have been subject to the further torture of detention and threat of removal, which has led to so many suicide attempts in Brook House[3]. Karen Doyle (MFJ National Organiser)

Victims of trafficking and torture, people with families here, people with serious health conditions and mental health difficulties are being taken from their accommodation and thrown into Brook House IRC for removal on charter flights with just five days notice[4]. When lawyers take on these cases at short notice and help their clients to access the protections available to them in law they are branded as ‘lefty lawyers’, akin to traffickers, and vilified simply for doing their job.

“This government is pursuing a relentless and dishonest campaign to vilify refugees and those who support and represent them. It has an incited an epidemic of race hatred and attacks, like the recent attempt to murder an immigration lawyer[5] and fascists targeting places where refugees are being housed. We will fight together with refugees and immigrants to end the super-charged Hostile Environment of Boris Johnson and Priti Patel. Antonia Bright (MFJ Chair)

Yarls-Wood-report2


[1] BBC News (Look East) Report 18/08/2020: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-beds-bucks-herts-53810521

[2] 7 days is the maximum someone can be detained in a Short Term Holding Facility

[3] https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2020/aug/12/asylum-seeker-removal-flight-go-ahead-despite-last-minute-court-action

[4] https://corporatewatch.org/cast-away-the-uks-rushed-charter-flights-to-deport-channel-crossers/

[5] https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2020/oct/10/lawyers-claim-knife-attack-at-law-firm-was-inspired-by-priti-patels-rhetoric

Stopping Covid19 means permanent status for everyone who doesn’t have papers

Contact your MP and get them to sign on to Claudia Webbe’s early day motion for permanent status for all undocumented immigrants. Critical to ensure everyone feels safe to get COVID19 tests and vaccinations.

Nobody should be left at risk of infection & death from Covid19 (or any other cause) because they are in Britain without immigration papers or have overstayed a visa. Nobody should face those risks because an unfair asylum system has rejected their claim or kept them waiting for a result, or for some other ‘immigration problem’ to be sorted out.

In January the Government stated that if immigrants and refugees without papers get tested for Covid19 or vaccinated against it, their details will not be shared with the Home Office and used to deport them. Undocumented people who have any experience of the Home Office and its agents are very unlikely to trust this ‘Promise’ – and they are right to be suspicious.   

The only way they will feel it’s safe to get Covid19 tests and vaccines is for the Government to give ALL undocumented immigrants a permanent right to live in the UK.

Movement for Justice (MFJ) supports the decision of a group of MPs to raise this demand in a parliamentary motion. They speak the truth about the Government’s racist anti-immigrant policies and they are clear that those policies are a danger to everyone. This is a bold move by the group of black and Asian Labour women MPs who initiated the motion, because it challenges the refusal of Keir Starmer and the rest of the present Labour leadership to campaign against the increasing racism of the Government’s policies.

We urge everyone to contact their MP and call on them to sign the motion below.  A campaign around this motion can inspire a fight by the left-wing majority of Labour Party members who Starmer is trying to silence (especially the youth and black & Asian members).

Undocumented migrants and covid-19 vaccination

Early Day Motion 1442: tabled on 03 February 2021

That this House believes that access to essential healthcare is a universal human right; regrets the continued existence of structural, institutional and systemic barriers in accessing NHS care experienced by undocumented migrants and those awaiting determination of their asylum, visa and immigration applications; considers that an effective public health response to the covid-19 crisis requires that the most vulnerable can afford to access food, healthcare, and self-isolate where necessary; understands that some of the most vulnerable people in society will not access vaccination against the virus, since to disclose their identity to the authorities would risk their arrest, detention and deportation; fears that without urgent Government intervention this will lead to further avoidable premature deaths, especially in the African, Asian and Minority Ethnic population; and therefore calls on the Home Office to grant everyone currently in the UK at this time who are undocumented migrants and those awaiting determination of their asylum, visa and immigration applications indefinite leave to remain, and to be eligible in due course to receive the covid-19 vaccination. (Emphasis added)

You don’t have to be a British citizen or voter, but give your address to show you live in their area.

To get your MP’s details go to https://members.parliament.uk/FindYourMP and type in your postcode.

You can use the message below; but it is best if you say why this issue is important to you personally.

Please let MFJ know what reply you get from your MP, email contact@movementforjustice.co.uk

Dear ……,

I am writing to urge you to add your name to Early Day Motion 1442, Undocumented migrants and covid-19 vaccination. I believe the motion is absolutely right when it points out that very many undocumented migrants won’t feel it is safe to get tested or vaccinated, whatever the risk to their health. That is why I support the motion’s call on the Home Office to grant Indefinite Leave to Remain to all undocumented migrants. I think this is a matter of basic justice and it is obviously necessary as a public health measure to protect everyone.

This issue is very important to me because……

Yours sincerely

General information. An Early Day Motion (EDM) is a kind of MPs’ petition, a way to raise an issue that isn’t being discussed in Parliament. This EDM was started by Claudia Webbe, (Leicester East MP who was part of MFJ’s Zoom Rally on Yarl’s Wood last year). It is co-sponsored by three other black & Asian women MPs in the Labour Party (Apsana Begum, Bell Ribeiro-Addy and Kim Johnson) plus John McDonnell and a Scottish National Party MP. So far it has been signed by a further 19 MPs from four parties.

photo/video report from MFJs immigrant rights march 4 July 2020

On Saturday 4th July 2020 we marched for immigrant rights as part of the growing worldwide #BlackLivesMatter movement. We started in Brixton, stopping at Brixton Police Station to remember those who’ve died at the hands of Brixton police, marched on to Serco and G4S head offices (the private companies responsible for the brutalisation, abuse and murder of so many) and ended at the Home Office. At each stop people who have experienced the racism and brutality of detention and deportations spoke out.

OUR DEMANDS…

* End the racist Hostile Environment for Immigrants policy

* No more charter flights – Stop immigration raids & deportations

* Shut down ALL detention centres

* Amnesty Now! Extend settled status to ALL immigrants who want it

* Defend & extend the free movement of people

* Widen the Windrush Scheme to all Windrush Generation descendants

* Jail killer police and immigration enforcers

* Build the independent, integrated, youth and immigrant led mass movement fighting for immigrant rights and equality

The fight against racism will decide our futures. It will decide whether Britain, the USA and Europe have a future of progress as democratic, multiracial societies based on equality, whether poor and oppressed people can resist and defeat our exploiters, whether young people can live hopeful, creative lives – or if our countries will be dragged backwards by the politics of Donald Trump and his backers, Boris Johnson and Brexit, and the Far Right across Europe. That is why we, on this side of the Atlantic Ocean, responded immediately to the mass movement that took to the streets after the police murder of George Floyd, and is still marching in every city & state in the US, day after day and week after week. 

A future without racism requires the defeat of racist policies that blame immigrants and black youth for the failures of government to meet the needs of poor, exploited and oppressed people. We are marching today, on 4th July, as youth speaking the truth about racist police brutality, and as immigrants and communities fighting for our right to live here with respect and dignity.

Black lives more than matter: the leadership of black and Asian people has been critical to every progressive victory in Britain for decades – to every victory that has taken us closer to equal quality education, decent healthcare and workers’ rights. Each new generation of immigrants from Britain’s former colonies and the rest of the world brings a new, fierce aspiration for a bright future, that is shared by the youth of all races.

That is the basis of the dynamism and hope that can fire a mass movement. That is the fear of the politicians and the rich & powerful who are desperate to divide us and dampen our ambition. 

Our fight back matters: The anti-racist movement that has taken to our streets must assert our power to decide our future, by raising and fighting for clear demands. The Home Office runs the immigration system and police; it is responsible for too many deaths and acts of brutality and too much forced squalor at the hands of the police, the immigration authorities and the private contractors who profit from the government’s racist Hostile Environment policy. We demand: jail all killer cops and immigration enforcers; announce an amnesty for all immigrants; shut down all immigration detention centres; stop immigration raids and deportations.

This first video is of Ugandan lesbian activist and leader in MFJ, Prossie. She was detained for 5 months in Yarls Wood in 2013 before being removed to Uganda under the now unlawful fast track system, for the first time here she publicly speaks out, in front of Serco headquarters (who run Yarl’s Wood) about what she went through and why she continues to fight…

At Brixton police station as we started to speak about those who have died at the hands of Brixton police, a passerby started shouting ‘all lives matter’ – they were swiftly shouted down!
“Immigrants – HERE TO STAY – Charter Flights – NO WAY!” marching through central Brixton
“When they say go back – FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT BACK!”
“Tear down the fences – OPEN THE BORDERS!”
“whose streets? OUR STREETS! and Where is our power? ON THE STREETS!”
“How we gonna do it? BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY!”
“Yarl’s Wood – Shut it Dooooown SHUT IT DOWN!”
“no Justice – NO PEACE – AGAIN – NO JUSTICE – NO PEACE!”
“IMMIGRANTS HAVE THE RIGHT – HERE TO STAY HERE TO FIGHT!”
MFJ leader and Windrush descendant Eulalee speaks outside Serco Head Office, her son was deported to Jamaica and murdered five months later.
Outside G4S Headquarters “I SAID – No Justice – NO PEACE!
“the racist immigration system is a virus – at least they are looking for a cure for coronavirus”
Perfect chant for outside the Home Office “WE ARE STRONGER!”
MFJs Tacko speaking outside G4S headquarters
MFJ’s Eulalee speaking outside the Home Office
MFJs Larry speaks about his experience as a Gay Nigerian asylum seeker

From Minneapolis to London, mass action led by black, Asian & immigrant youth defeats the racists & fascists.

Each weekend and most days since the police murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis, USA, we’ve had huge marches through central London and around the country. We risked coronavirus because we knew history wouldn’t wait. At times when the state goes too far and exposes its racism it creates a turning point. It is imperative that leaders emerge in action on the side of the oppressed to win. It means overcoming mis-leadership and fears of our own power in action. MFJ is an organisation building leaders in action, speaking the truth about racism. We know that to overthrow oppression, the oppressed must strike the blow.

On Saturday 6th June from Parliament Square we marched for miles – to the US embassy, to Home Office Headquarters, Parliament Square and Whitehall. It was an outpouring of anger by young people taking to the streets, to reckon with time-worn British racism. The speed of the escalation is testament to the line being drawn against all the ways we are being killed and sacrificed to the profit, political opportunism or convenience of a few – deaths at police hands; deaths in detention centres; being left to die from Covid-19; left in Grenfell Tower; left to drown in the Mediterranean sea; deported to countries we don’t know; losing everything to a bloodsucking immigration policy; Windrush generations humiliated; young people and immigrants scapegoated for the failures of a system that for ten years has bailed out banks not communities.

A reckoning has been a long time coming.

A struggle for power

A dynamic youth-lead anti-racist movement asserting its power in the streets is the most serious threat to the government’s racist policies and practices; racist Brexit, the hostile environment for immigrants, health, education and work inequalities and racist policing. It is also the strongest hope of the exploited and oppressed as we face a world in crisis desperate for revolutionary change.

That power – on the streets – has incensed racists and fascists across the country and led assorted far right groupings to call a counter demo against the BLM protest on 13th June, under the pretence of “protect the statues”. Their ‘defending statues’ was really about defending their racism against the awakening of a movement that could come to challenge the politics of nationalism and racism that gave them Brexit, and which most divides and weakens the working class as a whole. Their answer is to put black people back in ‘their place’.

Wherever the fascists march or demonstrate, their goals are simple: brutal racist intimidation; physical attacks on black people, Asian people, LGBT people and anti-fascists; recruiting more racists to their ranks. They want us weakened, afraid to act, and really afraid to fight back. Fascism has to be defeated; it cannot be negotiated. The past four years since the Brexit vote has seen racism and racist attacks increase, some of the largest fascist mobilisations including in London and Manchester since the 1970 ‘Keep Britain White’ marches. With the election of the most far right government since Thatcher, under Boris Johnson, and his rallying cry to racists everywhere of ‘Get Brexit Done,’ fascists have been emboldened. The timidity of Labour who turned a blind eye to Brexit racism allowed a weak Tory government to stay standing. It is no accident that bigoted racist and anti-Muslim attacks increased; Brexit gave licence to racists to act.

Overcoming the misleaders

The march BLM LDN called for Saturday 13th June would have outnumbered the fascists and easily driven away any right-wing racists trying to disrupt it. Turning back the fascists with their tails between their legs from the start would have cemented the power of the anti-racist movement. Instead BLM LDN announced they would ‘give’ the fascists Saturday, by moving to Friday instead. They lined up alongside everyone from the police, media, Akala and Boris Johnson, telling black people to clear out of the fascist’s way. That betrayal was a comfort to the far right, who may well have increased their attendance as a result. It is always a mistake to give ground to fascists to organise and grow; it leads to racist attacks on the day and in the aftermath. It treats black people as though we are weak, when it is precisely our strength that has brought about this critical point in history.

A distraction rally was held in Hyde Park, called by Stand up to Racism, which should have marched straight to Trafalgar Square, but the leaders of that rally also told people to go home after a few speeches. Thankfully hundreds ignored that advice and came to Trafalgar Square. London Black Revs and Malcom X Movement had called on protestors to go to Trafalgar Square from the start, and not back down to fascists.

The decision of the 200 or so, to stand ground in Trafalgar Square against all racist provocation and abuse, getting the word out as far and wide so others would come and join us, turned a near defeat into a major victory. The day ended with mass action lead by overwhelming black, working class young people, driving the fascists out streets by street, and taught them a hard lesson. It was a truly historic defeat for fascism.

An MFJ account of Saturday 13th June – Trafalgar Square to Waterloo

“It was known the racists and fascists came in largely through Victoria on coaches and trains to head to Parliament Square. They always start drinking early. Altercations with police began quickly, they attacked journalists and gradually fought through police lines to get to Trafalgar Square. These were the groups looking to attack any BLM / anti-fascists and do damage. They had glass bottles and fireworks as weapons.

“In Trafalgar Square the anti-racist demonstrators were overwhelmingly black, young and working-class, a lot of women. Everyone knew why we were there: we had to defend the growing movement by holding the ground to stop the fascists taking advantage of the day, and not clearing ourselves out of the way.

“We were only around 200, if that. There were police nominally separating the sides. The fascists (all men, some EDL, some violent groups connected through football) were gathered around the south west of the square shouting racists and misogynistic taunts, ‘go back to Africa,’ being provoking, and some in berets like ex-army gathered on Nelson’s Column. They carried on until they felt confident enough in their numbers to attack physically. At that point they moved like a flock around from the south end of the square, then up the east side to the higher ground along the top. They used the higher ground to lob glass bottles and fireworks into the crowd of black people, while making monkey noises and chanting. At the same time there were other racists milling around allied with the racist mobilisation.

Some police moved in, but a lot of the time the police stood back. The police caught up some fascists around Charing Cross, and later with police dogs stopped another breakaway group of fascists near Haymarket. There were fascists on side streets around Trafalgar Square.

Despite the mis-leaders who stayed away, everyone who stayed showed boldness greater than any of those fascists and racists. Our cause meant more – we are making history.

After an hour or so another big group of anti-racist protestors (some marched from Hyde Park, probably picking up others on the way) got to Trafalgar Square. Then our numbers were closer to a thousand, as it should have been. There were still confident fascists and racists verbally abusing black people around the square like it were a sport. They quickly found Trafalgar Square was no longer a space where you could be openly racist.  Emboldened and our numbers growing the racists and fascists got shut down.

We got moving down the side streets around the square. Fascists spotted in Leicester Square were chased out. Back in Trafalgar Square some of the earlier fascists who had been so confident and bold before were caught up with. Everyone who had aligned with the racist abuse found themselves questioned and confronted.

We marched down The Strand to Waterloo Bridge, widening the field where the fascists could no longer operate. Over the bridge at Waterloo station a group of fascists in the train station had presumably left behind a couple of their fascist friends. By now the numbers of anti-racists was still growing, still overwhelmingly black and working class. Some of the crowd managed to chase the fascists into the station.

Our side’s goal was clear, we wanted to defend our city, our people from the fascist threat and we wanted to ensure that any fascist or potential fascist thinks twice before returning to attack us. We ended up as thousands, and we took the streets back from them, from Waterloo to Trafalgar Square to Whitehall, to Vauxhall – we chased those fascists out, any who thought to challenge us, any who sought to spew their racism or attack us got taught a lesson in the power of working class black, white and Asian people fighting in unison to defend our communities”

A historic victory against fascism

It is impossible to overstate the enormous victory over fascism which took place on Saturday 13th June, for the first time ever a mass black led, working class mobilisation in central London managed to beat back the fascists, force them out of our city in tears. There have been victories like this in our local communities such as Tower Hamlets when the EDL were defeated by masses of Asian youth and anti-fascists determined to defend their community, but in central London the fascists have been able to hold increasingly large demonstrations freely – they see central London as their space. The victory was confirmed when the Democratic Football Lads Alliance put out a statement afterwards saying they would be withdrawing from future mobilisations to ‘defend statues’.

Fear of this expression of the power of a black-led struggle, and the great significance of our victory, has meant that much of the left, and the leaders who use the ‘BLM’ name, are refusing to tell the truth about what happened. Most people who were not there will just have seen the footage from earlier in the day when the fascists had the upper hand and the photo of a fascist being carried to safety. Neither of these things tells the true story of what happened, the scale of the physical, emotional, political defeat for fascism – something that only happened because thousands defied the call to ‘stay at home’.

Movement for Justice by any means necessary exists to mobilise that power, to make the power of exploited and oppressed communities a social force that will defeat the racism of the state, abolish its brutal system of oppression, and smash the fascists. That movement will give new hope to youth, to the poor and working class, and to everyone suffering discrimination and prejudice.

MFJ is a movement of leaders, most of us immigrants and asylum seekers who have fought to be in Britain and fought to stay here. We fight to abolish the anti-immigrant system that is central to racism in Britain: – to end the racist scapegoating of immigrants and the government’s ‘Hostile Environment’ policy; to shut down all detention centres and stop deportations and immigration raids; to win the right of ALL descendants & family members of the Windrush Generation to stay in the UK; and to extend the Settled Status for EU citizens in Britain to EVERYONE, from any country, who is living here without secure immigration status.

MFJ does not rely on politicians, judges or any institutions of the state. To secure our rights and futures we must build an independent, integrated mass movement, led by youth, immigrants and the black & Asian communities, and fight by any means necessary for civil rights,  immigrant rights, and equality for all.