Man Banned From Soccer Games For Waving Anti-ISIS Flag

| by Michael Allen
Tommy Robinson holding anti-ISIS flagTommy Robinson holding anti-ISIS flag

Tommy Robinson, a controversial right-wing activist in the U.K., was recently banned from soccer games after waving a St. George's Cross flag with the words "F--- ISIS" on it while at the Euro 2016 soccer tournament in France.

Police in Bedfordshire, England, served Robinson with the banning order for allegedly inciting hatred against Muslims, notes

Robinson helped start the English Defense League (EDL), which opposed the alleged "Islamization" of Britain. He was convicted of promoting a street brawl among soccer fans in July 2011, and banned from games for three years.

Robinson left the EDL in 2013 and began organizing a chapter of Pegida, another anti-Islam movement, in the U.K. in February, reports The Guardian.

Robinson has often insisted that he does not oppose Muslims, just Islam, which happens to be the religion of Muslims.

In addition to his anti-ISIS flag, Robinson also wore a shirt with a drawing of a U.K. soccer fan urinating on the Black Banner flag, which is used by ISIS, notes International Business Times, U.K. edition.

During a court hearing on June 24, Robinson's passport was taken away, but that action was reversed on June 29 at another hearing.

Robinson told International Business Times: "It's completely ridiculous. In court on Friday they said I had incited racial hatred because of the England flag and shirt I wore. I had done everything I could to avoid any trouble while in France. I stayed away from Marseille because I thought there could be problems, and I stayed outside the city center when I was in Lille."

Robinson is scheduled to appear in court in September to fight the banning order.

Robinson's lawyer, Alison Gurden, added:

I am concerned that this application is brought on the basis of a harassment campaign against Tommy Robinson, such that the Assistant Director of the United Kingdom Football Policing Unit, has become involved and provided a statement to the effect that as Tommy Robinson has a high social media profile, and is associated with Pegida UK this is likely to act as a catalyst for disorder and violence outside of the United Kingdom.

This clearly is an attack on Tommy Robinson's freedom of speech and association, and is in direct contravention of the evidence which the UK Football Policing Unit have that Tommy Robinson [traveled] to France during the period that the England football team played in Marseille, yet he chose not to travel to Marseille, but instead was in Paris without any incident of violence or disorder.

The U.K. Football Policing Unit would not comment; the Bedfordshire Police Department would only say that the banning order was drawn up before Robinson went to France.

Sources:, The Guardian, IBTimes UK / Photo credit: Pegida UK/Twitter

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