Gordon Brown has condemned anti-war protesters who shouted insults at a parade to honour soldiers returning from Iraq.
Two people were arrested after a protest against the 2nd Battalion The Royal Anglian Regiment as they paraded through Luton yesterday.
The Prime Minister said in a statement: “The whole country is proud of our brave servicemen and women who serve their country with great distinction and courage.
“That pride in our Armed Forces was shown once again today when thousands turned out to welcome the 2nd Battalion The Royal Anglian Regiment. It is therefore disappointing that a tiny minority tried, but ultimately failed, to disrupt today’s event.”
The battalion were returning from their second six-month tour in Iraq in two years. The mainly Muslim protesters held cards with slogans including “Anglian Soldiers: Butchers of Basra” and “Anglian Soldiers: cowards, killers, extremists”.
Protesters accused the soldiers of “gloating” about “killing innocent women and children”. Crowds began a counter-demonstration and two people were arrested.
Shahid Malik, the Justice Minister, said that “all decent people, irrespective of religion, will be sickened by the antics of this group of extremists”.