July 28, 2014

The founder of Britain First has resigned from the far-right group over its “provocative and counterproductive” mosque invasions. James “Jim” Dowson, a former British National Party (BNP) member and anti-abortion campaigner, announced his departure on Sunday. While Britain First blamed “media pressure” and family issues for the decision and said he would be missed “enormously” in a saccharine post, Mr Dowson publicly shamed the group’s tactics as “unacceptable and unchristian”.

The 49-year-old told the Mirror: “Most of the Muslims in this country are fine. They are worried about extremists the same as us. So going into their mosques and stirring them up and provoking them is political madness and a bit rude.”

Britain First posts triumphant videos of the so-called “invasions” on its website and Facebook page, where its paramilitary-style arm is seen confronting imams and worshippers. The group also organises “Christian patrols” in ethnically diverse areas and has been known to hand out Bibles to Muslims. The group ignored requests to take off their shoes in a place of worship, saying “when you respect women we’ll respect your mosques”.

The father-of-nine is facing criminal charges relating to loyalist flag protests in Belfast earlier this year and claims to be under “constant police surveillance”.

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