This morning we received a letter from Edinburgh Chief Superintendent Kenny MacDonald, in response to the safety concerns I raised about the planned gathering of followers of Daryush Valizadeh - known as 'Roosh V' - in Edinburgh this weekend.
To be clear, no-one knows how many men in Edinburgh are likely to turn up for Mr Valizadeh's attempt at a gathering. His self-promotion suggests he is hoping to see followers "amassing in large numbers" at events around the world, but it's difficult to gauge whether he has any support here - I hope not. Mr Valizadeh promotes a set of beliefs that endanger women's rights, safety and freedom.
Despite the threats from Mr Valizadeh to "exact furious retribution" on anyone who challenges them on the night, I know some counter protests have been planned and I would urge everyone to take care. As you'll see from the letter below, the police are monitoring the situation.
Letter from the police below:-
I am writing today with a message of reassurance around the "pick-up artist", Daryush Valizadeh.
We're working closely with partners as a result of the information we've received regarding the proposed Roosh V meetings. Edinburgh is one of the many proposed locations throughout the UK, but no formal application has been made to stage this event.
From the outset, engagement has taken place with our key partners and we will continue to monitor social media channels and community interaction in general. If any criminality is detected, appropriate action will be taken.
I acknowledge the depth of feeling in the community and would be grateful if you could reassure your constituents regarding the police response.
As ever, ensuring the safety of the public is paramount. Our message is clear, sex without consent is rape. Rape and sexual crime is one of our highest priorities and we will continue to work collaboratively with our partners and the community to prevent these crimes, support victims and bring perpetrators to justice when this does occur.
21/12/18 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm Stockbridge Library Surgery
28/12/18 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm Royston/Wardieburn Community Centre
04/01/19 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm Constituency Office, 166 Great Junction Street Leith
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18/01/19 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm Stockbridge Library Surgery