American pastor now not coming to the UK

12 December 2010, 09:50 | Updated: 13 December 2010, 17:42

A controversial American pastor is now not coming to Britain.

Terry Jones has now decided against speaking at an EDL rally being held in Luton next year.

In a statement on the groups Facebook page they have said:

"The EDL can confirm that Pastor Jones will not be attending the English Defence League demonstration against sharia in Luton on 5 February. We wish him success in his efforts to oppose the rise of sharia in the United States and thank him for his interest in the EDL."

In a statement on his website this weekend, Terry Jones - who threatened to burn the Koran on the anniversary of the September 11th attacks - said he had been invited to speak at an "historic" rally in Luton in February next year by the far right group, the English Defence League.

Pastor Jones' blog said he wanted to, "speak in support of the continued fight against the Islamification of England and Europe."

A statement promoting the event on the English Defence League's Facebook site says they hope the rally - to be held on the 5th February - will attract, "our biggest turn out yet".

Anti-extremism campaigners - from a group called Hope not Hate - had called for the Home Secretary Theresa May to ban Pastor Jones from the UK.

A petition had been set up on their website and Nick Knowles from the organisation had writted a letter to the Home Secretary saying Pastor Jones', "presence in Luton will be incendiary and highly dangerous. He will attract and encourage thousands of EDL supporters to take to the streets, and cause concern and fear among Muslims across the country."