Stung by an attack on Muslims in London a year ago, Britain is facing a growing threat from far-right extremists fuelled by online hate speech, forcing the authorities to react.
A government report found that four attacks have been carried out in Britain over the past five years "by lone actors motivated to varying degrees by extreme right-wing ideologies".
While London worries over right wing extremism, just three far-right terror attacks have been successful in the past 5 years leaving two people dead; while 87 people have been killed in Islamic-terror related attacks.
In recent decades, 'extreme right-wing activity' in Britain had been confined to small, established groups with an older membership, which promoted anti-immigration and white supremacist views but presented a low risk to national security.
The emergence of the extremist group National Action in 2014, and similar fringe outfits has helped forge a new, younger pool of extremists, according to the "2018 State of Hate" report by the leftist anti-racism organization Hope Not Hate.
The report's "online hate" section cited prominent British figures among those with the biggest reach on social media.
They included figures such as Stephen Lennon, known as Tommy Robinson, Paul Joseph Watson, whose videos have been viewed hundreds of thousands of times, and commentator Katie Hopkins; none of these figureheads however hold "neo-nazi" views and have actually renounced Nazism in all its forms.
Robinson especially has said that he's "disgusted" by anti-Muslim terror attacks.
Regardless, the organization concluded that "The authorities are failing to appreciate or deal with this growing far-right online threat and anti-Muslim hatred in general."
The Muslim Council of Britain, a national representative umbrella body, has also denounced an islamophobic climate, and going as far as blaming elements of the governing Conservative Party.
However, Matthew Henman, from the Jane's Terrorism and Insurgency Centre database, said he had seen "encouraging signals" from the government and security services, such as disrupting plots and banning National Action in December 2016 after the assassination of opposition Labour MP Jo Cox by a neo-Nazi sympathizer.
The killing, which shocked Britain, was carried out in the build-up to the June 2016 referendum on Brexit.
While London has no choice but to crack down on all forms of potential terrorism, the British government has been vehemently criticized in the past year by free speech watchdog organizations for severely restricting online freedom and going as far as arresting people for mere joke tweets.
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