National Action has today become the first extreme right-wing group to be proscribed as a terrorist organisation.
An order laid in Parliament on Monday (12 December) to proscribe National Action under the Terrorism Act 2000 has now come into effect following debates in the Houses of Parliament. As a result, being a member – or inviting support for – the organisation will be a criminal offence, carrying a sentence of up to 10 years’ imprisonment.
National Action is a neo-Nazi group that was established in 2013 and has branches across the UK. It has been proscribed following an assessment that it is ‘concerned in terrorism’. The group’s online propaganda material, disseminated via social media, frequently features extremely violent imagery and language. National Action also promoted and encouraged acts of terrorism after Jo Cox’s murder.
Home Secretary Amber Rudd said:
As Home Secretary, I am clear that the safety and security of our families, communities and country comes first.
National Action is a racist, antisemitic and homophobic organisation which stirs up hatred, glorifies violence and promotes a vile ideology. It has absolutely no place in a Britain that works for everyone.
Proscribing it will prevent its membership from growing, stop the spread of poisonous propaganda and protect vulnerable young people at risk of radicalisation from its toxic views.
Decisions about whether to proscribe a particular organisation are taken after extensive consideration and in light of a full assessment of available information.
The Home Secretary took the decision to proscribe National Action prior to the trial of Thomas Mair, who was convicted and sentenced for the murder of Jo Cox MP.
National Action becomes the 71st organisation to be proscribed, alongside 14 organisations connected to Northern Ireland.