ANGRY protesters met Ukip’s annual conference yesterday over the party’s decision to invite a speaker from the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party.
Ukip’s interim leader Steve Crowther denied that AfD were a fascist party after it was forced to defend its decision to invite Hugh Bronson to address the conference.
However Stand Up to Racism co-convener Weyman Bennett branded the decision a “disgrace” and told the Star that they were protesting against “racism, fascism, antisemitism and Islamophobia,” which has gained currency in Ukip.
AfD won 94 seats in the German parliament, finishing third in last weekend’s federal elections — the first far-right MPs since about 1960.
Mr Bronson, who was on the party’s European list, has vowed to fight “an invasion of foreigners” into Germany.
Ukip’s annual conference in Torquay elected its new leader yesterday after serial fantasist Paul Nuttall resigned following the party’s poor performance in June’s general election.
Former army officer Henry Bolton beat off the challenge of Sharia Watch founder Anne-Marie Waters, who has described Islam as “evil.”
He was announced as the victor in a close-run contest with 30 per cent of the vote in a seven-horse race.
It was rumoured that 18 of Ukip’s 20 MEPs were set to quit if Ms Waters had won, with former leader Nigel Farage warning the party would be “finished” if it became “anti-Islam.”
Ms Waters’s candidacy fuelled speculation of a breakaway led by Mr Farage, with Mr Bolton warning earlier this year that Ukip was in danger of becoming the “UK Nazi Party.”
She caused controversy over her links with former EDL leader Tommy Robinson and even suggested that it could be possible for him to join Ukip if he wanted to do so.
The pair co-founded a British wing of the German anti-Muslim Pegida movement.
Mr Bennett said: “Anne Marie Waters is a disgrace to politics. She is an Islamophobe and a racist.
“But she is the child of Nigel Farage and he should claim paternity for spawning an organisation that sows such division and hatred.”