Protesters clash at hotel at centre of asylum seeker accommodation plan

It comes amid plans to house 200 people seeking asylum in the UK at the Muthu Glasgow River Hotel in Erskine.

Protesters clash at Muthu Glasgow River Hotel at centre of asylum seeker accommodation plan in Renfrewshire STV News

Protesters have clashed outside a hotel in Renfrewshire for the third week in a row over plans to accommodate asylum seekers.

Activists from the Stand Up to Racism campaign organised a counter-demonstration in response to members of the far-right group Patriotic Alternative gathering at the Muthu Glasgow River Hotel in Erskine each Sunday.

It comes amid plans to accommodate 200 asylum seekers at the hotel.

The Scottish Refugee Council said it was concerned that the Home Office’s use of hotels to accommodate people seeking asylum is causing anxiety and stress in some local areas.

After clashes, a local Stand Up to Racism spokesperson accused Patriotic Alternative of spreading “hate, misinformation and lies” in the community.

In a video posted from the demonstration, he said: “You only have to look at their website to see that’s the case.

“The truth of the matter is, Erskine, and I speak for Erskine, we say yes.

“Yes to refugees, no to the Patriotic Alternative.

“They can go away, they are not welcome in Erskine. Refugees, we welcome them.”

The group estimated there were around 100 Stand Up to Racism activists at the protest.

Social media footage appeared to show around 40 people from Patriotic Alternative.

Police confirmed they were aware of the protest with officers in attendance but no arrests were made.

Renfrewshire Council previously told STV News it had no prior knowledge of the plans to house 200 men aged between 18 and 40 at the hotel and the community had not been consulted.

Local MP Gavin Newlands accused Patriotic Alternative of “latching on” to the issue to use it for “racist and xenophobic ends”.

He described the use of the hotel for asylum accommodation as “a damning indictment of the UK Government’s catastrophic oversight of the asylum and immigration system”.

The tensions come after fifteen people, including a 13-year-old boy, were arrested after a police van was set alight and fireworks were thrown at officers during a protest outside a hotel housing asylum seekers in England.

Merseyside Police said thirteen men and two women, aged between 13 and 54 and mainly from the Knowsley area, are being questioned on suspicion of violent disorder after the demonstration outside the Suites Hotel in Knowsley on Friday, February 10.

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