English Defence League (EDL) Riots, Violence Escalates After Woolwich 'Beheading' [PHOTO]

The English Defence League (EDL) has seized on the "beheading" death of a British soldier Wednesday in the Woolwich district of London as a reason to take to the streets and spread anti-Muslim hatred.

The killing has been linked to two unidentified men who reportedly identified as Muslim after the attack and allegedly attempted to cut off their unidentified victim's head using butcher's knives. They were shot by police and are reportedly receiving treatment in separate hospitals.

EDL in Woolwich EDL members take to the streets in Woolwich following the killing of a man there Wednesday.  Twitter /@RafiRahman_

 

A large number of members of the hate group showed up near the scene of the killing Wednesday night, U.K. time, and are seen in photos posted on Twitter wearing black ski masks bearing the "EDL" logo and bright-yellow jackets. Reports suggest the gathering isn't going down peacefully.

English Defence League members threw glass bottles and other "missiles at police in Woolwich," as 75 to 100 men gathered near the attack site, leading police to try to control them with batons, Sky News reported Wednesday night. The Daily Mail reported that EDL leader Tommy Robinson was in attendance at the rally.

The response by the EDL came as the group issued the following call to action via its official Twitter account: "ANY EDL MEMBERS TAKE TO THE STREETS IN YOUR LOCAL TOWN/CITY TAKE A STAND !!!!!!"

Already a man has been arrested in Braintree Wednesday night for allegedly attempting to commit arson against a Muslim prayer center and knife possession in the wake of the murder of the soldier, according to EADT 24.

An MP representing Braintree, Brooks Newark, responded to the attack via Twitter: "Local mosque in Braintree attacked by man with knives and incendiary device. Man arrested. No one injured," while a follow-up post stated: "Just met with leaders of local mosque in Braintree which was attacked this evening. Thanked local police for their swift response," according to Sky News.

Another man was arrested Wednesday night for allegedly attacking a mosque in Gillingham, according to Kent Online. It is not clear whether the incidents in Braintree and Gillingham were connected to the EDL, though the group did tweet out articles about them.

The EDL is a far-right movement that seeks to have all Muslims expelled from the United Kingdom. The group often responds to incidents of violence tied to Muslims by hitting the streets in protests, some of which have led to violence and clashes with police and counter-protesters.

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