Far-Right 'as dangerous as Islam terrorists'

Evening Standard by Justin Davenport and Ken Hyder | Thursday, 14 April 2011 | Click here for original article

Far-Right extremist groups should be treated more seriously by authorities and investigated the same way as Islamic terrorism, a new report says today.

The study dispels the myth Right-wing terrorists act alone, saying most are motivated by "dangerous networks".

Author Gerry Gable, publisher of anti-fascist magazine Searchlight, warns that often the extremists' actions are only discovered by luck.
While most jailed for terror or violent acts in recent years were caught before they could act, the report, commissioned by the Labour government, adds: "That will not always be the case."

It says authorities, including police and Crown Prosecution Service, have seen far-Right terrorists as "lone wolf" individuals rather than "the inevitable consequence of the activities of several, often small, organisations that espouse a violent racist and fascist ideology".

It states: "This has meant they have failed to put in place effective strategies to monitor these extreme-Right groups with a view to early identification of individuals who show signs of a transition from racist abuse and threatening behaviour to terrorism and murder.

"Because of a lack of willingness by successive governments to accept the existence of a terrorist threat other than from Islamist extremism, the growth of violence from the extreme Right that sometimes leads to terrorist acts has not been properly examined and tackled in a coherent way."

The report says the existence of far-Right terrorism was put in the public eye by nail bomber David Copeland, an ex-British National Party activist who killed three people and injured 139 in London in 1999.

It highlights 40 people jailed for Right-wing extremism and says the majority were motivated by groups or used the internet to associate with like-minded people. Among them is neo-fascist Neil Lewington, jailed in 2009 for plotting a white supremacy terrorist campaign.

The report's proposals include better intelligence-gathering and monitoring of violent groups.

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