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Friday, 18 June 2010

Muslim militants hurl abuse at military parade [Daily Mirror]

- By Tom Pettifor 16/06/2010

Muslim protesters caused outrage yesterday by abusing soldiers returning from Afghanistan - as three more brave troops were killed fighting the Taliban.

The frontline heroes were branded "murderers", "butchers" and "baby killers" by a group of 40 militants who barracked them while they marched through the streets.

The sickening taunts sparked violent clashes with around 100 right-wing counter-protesters. Mounted police waded in to stop the fighting.

The vile Muslims Against Crusades protesters waved banners with slogans such as "Hitler's henchmen had the same excuse, 'We are just doing our job'" and "What are you dying for? 18K".

Their protests came as military sources said the latest three troops to die perished in the lawless Helmand province.

The disgraceful scenes infuriated onlookers and relatives who had come to pay their respects to the 150 troops from the 1st Battalion Royal Anglian Regiment as they marched through Barking, East London.

Charlene Byrne, whose boyfriend Lance Corporal Scott Hardy, 26, was killed three months ago in Afghanistan, branded the militants "disgusting".

The 24-year-old said: "It's terrible this group has got away with it. Obviously, not everyone supports what's happening in Afghanistan, but they shouldn't take it out on the soldiers." The father of one of the marching troops, who did not wish to be named, added: "It's despicable, it makes me really angry.

"We live in such a tolerant country and all these people want to do is throw it back in our faces." Two arrests were made after MAC clashed with far-right supporters, including members of the English Defence League.

Frozen pork sausages, eggs and ice were thrown at the Muslims.

MAC's Abdu Hafizadeen said: "We are here to condemn the Royal Anglian Regiment. They are the terrorists."

The soldiers, marching with fixed bayonets, ignored the abuse. They recently returned from their third tour of Afghanistan after losing five men.

Two members of the 1st Battalion The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment were shot dead in separate incidents yesterday.

And a Royal Marine died at Selly Oak Hospital in Birmingham after being flown home with wounds sustained in a gun battle against rebels on Sunday.

Task Force Helmand spokesman Lieutenant Colonel James Carr-Smith said: "Their bravery and boldness in the face of danger will not be forgotten.

"They died in the course of their duty, amongst their comrades whilst improving the lives of ordinary Afghans."

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