A man gestures at a woman wearing a headscarf at a demonstration organized by the far-right English Defense League (EDL) in central London on June 24, 2017. (Photos by AFP)
Scuffles break out as anti-fascist activists take on marches planned by far-right and anti-Islam groups, including the English Defense League, across the UK.
Hundreds of police officers were dispatched to streets in the capital London and the country's second biggest city Birmingham Saturday in an effort to prevent violence.
In Birmingham, dozens of Britain First activists waved national flags and banners, reading "Time to fight Islamic Terror," while chanting "Britain First, Fighting Back."
Counter-demos were, meanwhile, planned by the Unite Against Fascism and United Against Extremism.
People take part in a counter-demonstration organized by Unite Against Fascism (UAF) during a demonstration by the far-right group the English Defense League (EDL) in central London on June 24, 2017.
In recent months, Britain has been rocked by a string of deadly terrorist attacks.
"There will be a high-visibility police presence at the scene and we have significant resources on standby should they be required," said West Midlands Police, which covers Birmingham, on Twitter.
More strict conditions were imposed for the protests in London.
"We have made the decision to impose conditions based on current tensions and concerns, information about the intentions of the organizers of these events and intelligence from previous marches held by similar groups," said Superintendent Emma Richards in a statement.
According to Reuters, more than 160 people were arrested in a similar protest in an area of east London in 2013.
Police officers are pictured during a demonstration in central London on June 24, 2017.
Last week, a 48-year-old male driver rammed his vehicle into Muslims coming out of a mosque in the Finsbury Park area of north London, leaving at least one person dead and ten others injured, in an attack described by Britain's largest Muslim organization as a "violent manifestation of Islamophobia."

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