(UPDATED) First looks at the anti-Islam ENGLISH DEFENCE LEAGUE protest march in Luton

This is a peaceful protest, yet we never see this many police when the bloody Islamists riot in the streets of London.

“We are fed up with the cultural erosion of our country being perpetrated by mass Muslim immigration.”

Just in from a BNI reader: Police urged EDL founder to leave town before the march because of threats on his life by Muslims. Looks like he was there though.

UK GUARDIAN(H/T bains)Stephen Lennon (aka Tommy Robinson), 28, said senior police officers were urging him to leave his home town ahead of the anticipated arrival of thousands of EDL supporters.

The militant anti-Islamist campaigner said he was under police protection. He claimed Bedfordshire police had issued him with an “Osman warning”, which are given by the police to advise individuals that they are at serious risk of being killed by someone who appears to have the capability to make good their threat.

Lennon, who routinely wears a bulletproof vest, said the warning followed a text message threatening to kill his children.

He said a written warning given to him by police states the Islamic community are “agitated” by tomorrow’s EDL demonstration. The message added: “There is a threat to the life of leader Stephen Lennon. This is likely to be aggravated by the visit to Luton. You would be advised it would more appropriate if you leave the area for the foreseeable future.”

Tommy Robinson speaks at the EDL march.

The usually ‘anti-Islam’ DAILY MAIL calls the protests ‘Hate on the streets. Massive police operation as far-right group descends on town in protest against ‘extreme Islam.’

UK DAILY MAIL –Thousands of English Defence League (EDL) supporters descended on the town that spawned the far-right movement for an inflammatory protest yesterday.

The far-right street protest movement opposes what it sees as the spread of Sharia law and militant Islam in England. The group gathered in Luton, where counter-demonstrations were organised by Unite Against Fascism (UAF) and sections of the town’s Muslim community.

By early evening, police said that 19 people had needed medical treatment throughout the day, sixteen of whom were members of the public or protesters – all with minor injuries. Three of the 19 were police officers – again all classed as minor injuries – and none were thought to be as a result of assaults. Eight people had been arrested, mostly for possession of offensive weapons and assault.

The demonstration was taking place just hours after Prime Minster David Cameron delivered a speech in Munich in which he declared that multiculturalism had failed in the UK and he called for a ‘muscular liberalism’ that challenges Islamist extremism more forcefully.

Around 2,000 EDL supporters, some from far-flung corners of Europe, gathered in the town’s St George’s Square for speeches.Around 150 members of UAF formed a blockade at the exit of Luton train station in a bid to stop EDL supporters entering their designated area ahead of the demonstration. They linked arms and chanted ‘close the station’ and ‘Nazi scum off our streets’.

Founder Stephen Lennon, 28, said yesterday he was warned his life was in danger if he led the protest.

Speaking about the demonstration beforehand, Mr Lennon, who uses the pseudonym Tommy Robinson, said members did not want violence. He added: ‘We want it to be peaceful. We want to get our point across. We want our local and national issues at the forefront, not anything else.’

And he told the crowd: ‘There are no racial tensions in Luton, just religious tensions.’

The EDL protesters were branded ‘racist thugs’ by Labour MEP Richard Howitt. Speaking at the counter rally he said: ‘The EDL have bussed a ragtag coalition of racist thugs from France, Germany, Holland, Belgium and all over the UK into Luton today.

‘On behalf of the people of Luton, this town can never be a home for neo-fascists, or the prejudice and hatred they spout. ‘The message to the EDL is clear: this is not your home, you are not welcome here.’

Kelvin Hopkins, the Labour MP for Luton North, was in Park Square to show his support for the anti-racist protest.