Tuesday, 12 March 2013

‘Infidels of Britain’ protest outside Birmingham primary school in the memory of Aaron Dugmore

Darren Clifft, centre, with Neo-Nazis involved in the protest
Darren Clifft, centre, with Neo-Nazis involved in the protest
A Neo-Nazi protest outside a Birmingham school has been condemned by an MP.
A group, calling themselves the ‘Infidels of Britain’ (IoB), gathered at the gates of Erdington Hall Primary School as children arrived for lessons on Monday morning.
Three weeks earlier nine-year-old pupil Aaron Dugmore was found hanging in his bedroom. His family claimed he took his life after racist taunts by Asian bullies at school.
Labour MP Jack Dromey said that the extremists were trying to exploit Aaron’s death and divide the community in Erdington.
And a friend of Aaron’s family stressed that the IoB protest had nothing to do with the youngster’s parents or relations.
Police have patrolled the school gates before and after lessons following the protest.
Mr Dromey said: “With an investigation underway, it is contemptible that neo-Nazis should seek to exploit the tragic death of a nine year-old boy, hoping to divide our community.

Aaron Dugmore
Aaron Dugmore

  “But they will not succeed. Everyone in Erdington is united in sympathy for Aaron’s family and no-one wants boot boys to intimidate young children and their parents as they arrive for school.”
The family friend and fellow parent told the Sunday Mercury: “This protest was organised without the knowledge of Aaron’s family.
“There were three people standing outside the gates, and another man walking up and down the road handing out leaflets.
“It said on the leaflet: ‘Aaron, aged nine, was bullied to death for being white.”
The IoB demo came two days before Aaron’s funeral at St Barnabus Church in Erdington.
The youngster was discovered unconscious in his bedroom in his home in Erdington, on February 11 and died the following day.
An inquest into his death was opened and adjourned at Birmingham Coroner’s Court on February 21.
One of the protesters was kickboxer Darren Clifft, 24, a far right campaigner who calls himself the ‘Klansman’ of the ‘West Midlands Infidels’.

Jack Dromey
Jack Dromey

  Clifft, from Walsall, West Midlands, previously posed in pictures giving a Nazi-style salute in support of Norwegian mass murderer Anders Behring Breivik and in others dressed in a Klu Klux Klan costume.
His Facebook page states he supports the British Union of Fascists and National Socialists.
Just hours after the protest – which police attended but made no arrests – Clifft appeared in a picture posted on Facebook with two young associates.
The pictures were uncovered by EDL News, a volunteer organisation which monitors the far right English Defence League.
The trio – who were also photographed together at a recent EDL march in Manchester – were holding a flag emblazoned with ‘White Pride Worldwide’ and giving flat-handed Nazi salutes.
Aaron started in Year 5 at Erdington Hall last September after his family moved to Erdington.
The school had previously said how the youngster had ‘settled in quickly’ and had begun to work well in his small class.
West Midlands Police and the Birmingham Safeguarding Children Board are investigating the death, but have refused to comment on the bullying allegations.
Aaron’s mum Kelly-Marie, 30, previously claimed that her son had been the victim of racist taunts before his death.
Speaking last weekend Kelly-Marie said of her son’s death: “We are not racist people.
“Aaron got on with all the children at his last school, and for him to have been bullied because of the colour of his skin makes me feel sick to my stomach.”
A spokesman for West Midlands Police confirmed they dealt with the protest.

Erdington Hall Primary School
Erdington Hall Primary School

  “We were aware of a small protest which took place outside of Erdington Hall School on March 4,” said the spokesman.
“Officers attended and are continuing to liaise with the school.”
Head teacher Martyn Collin wrote to parents, some of whom had taken their children home over safety fears on Monday.
“I am writing to apologise to you for the difficult start we had to the school day today,” he wrote. “I know some parents were concerned about safety and took their children home.
“We have spoken to the police who will be attending the school at the beginning and end of each day this week to ensure that pupils arrive in a safe environment.
“The protestors are within their rights to attend and carry out a peaceful protest, and this will be monitored by the police.”


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