Members of anti-Islam group United Patriots Front cut the head off a small dummy in a black mask, spilling fake blood near the Bendigo council entrance. Photo: Meredith O’Shea
Anti-mosque campaigners went to new lengths to protest against the approval of a mosque in Bendigo, when a small group of men beheaded a dummy at the local council building on Sunday.
Members of anti-Islam group United Patriots Front gathered at the Bendigo council in the afternoon to cut the head off a small dummy in a black mask, spilling fake blood on the ground just metres away from the council’s entrance.
The United Patriots Front describe themselves as a “nationwide movement, opposing the spread of Left Wing treason and spread of Islamism”.
The stunt was not only in reaction to a mosque’s approval in Bendigo but also a response to the shooting of a NSW police employee in Parramatta. Photo: Meredith O’Shea
The group’s leader Blair Cottrell said the stunt was a “political statement against diversity dogma”.
He said the dummy did not represent any person but “the innocent being mercilessly slaughtered by the faith of Islam”.
The group has been active in its objection to a mosque being built in Bendigo, and have attended a number of rallies marred by ugly scenes between counter protesters.
Mr Cottrell said the stunt was not only in reaction to the mosque’s approval “against the will of the Bendigo people” but also in response to the shooting of a NSW Police employee in Parramatta on Friday.
It has been reported the 15-year-old shooter visited a mosque shortly before he allegedly shot and killed the police worker outside Parramatta’s police station.
On Sunday, Mr Cottrell and three other members watched on as a man wielding a large knife and wearing a mock Arabic headcovering cut the head off the dummy.