ANTI-FASCIST campaigners say they will counter an anti-Islam 9/11 protest outside Harrow Central Mosque.

A coalition of hardline groups are arranging a demonstration, against what they describe as the “islamisation” of Britain from 5pm to 8pm on September 11.

But when they arrive at the building, in Station Road, they may find Unite Against Fascism (UAF) supporters already camped outside holding their own event, due to start at 1.30pm with speeches at 6pm.

Harrow Council last week said counter-demonstrations would only make things worse but the anti-Fascists say they have the right to show solidarity by staging what they describe as a peace vigil.

Sarah Cox, 72, a member of UAF's Brent and Harrow branch, said: “I think what makes things worse is that if people don't stand up to these thugs they get away with marching into a place like Harrow.

“The sort of thing that follows then is attacks on shops or the fire bombing of mosques later on. They feel that they've got away with it.

“We are not out to fight them, I'm 72 years old and 5ft 1inch, I'm not sure I'd win.”

UAF and members of the English Defence League (EDL) together with Casuals United clashed in Birmingham on August 10, in skirmishes that led to police arresting 35 people.

Both sides say they intend to protest peacefully but accuse the other of having violent tendencies.

Stephen Gash, of Stop Islamisation of Europe, who was at the Birmingham demonstration and said “all the violence was perpetrated by Muslims and UAF supporters”.

He said: “We don't believe in moderate Muslims. We are saying to the moderate Muslims if you are moderate kick those extremists out of the mosques.”

He added: “The reason we are hardline against Muslims is that if people keep talking about moderate Muslims then they do nothing.”

The protest was organised following the collapse of another demonstration planned for August 29, which centered around allegations the mosque intended to set up a Sharia Court in its new building.

The religious institution has categorically denied the claims, with one member saying Britain is the “best country in the world” and has no need for any addition to the existing legal system.

Mosque leaders say they reject extremism and do not allow the preaching of extremist views.

Ghulam Rabbani, general secretary of the mosque, said: “We also believe that September 11 wasn't right.

“Everybody is allowed to pray but if we come to know that groups are extremist and they are trying to say something which is not right we don't let them.”

He added: “We have a policy of anti-extremism. If people have something against us, they probably don't know us.

“If you are Christian or Muslim we can still be friends. We hope the local community and our friends and the local government and police will be there to try seriously to defend everybody.”

Mr Gash said he does not believe the Mr Rabbani or other Mosque leaders when they say they are anti-extremist.

Councillor Susan Hall, responsible for environment and community safety, said Harrow Council is standing shoulder to shoulder with the Mosque.

She said: “The one thing we request is that we all work together to make sure that any demonstration goes off peacefully and that you don't in any way get involved in counter demonstrations because that's when there are even more problems for the police.”