The English Defence League has lost it’s co-leaders as Tommy Robinson and Kevin Carroll step down.
A statement said they took the decision to resign from their positions due to concerns around far-right extremism in the group.
The pair’s announcement comes only a month after the EDL marched on Tower Hamlets, where they were met with a larger counter-rally staged by the community opposing their views.
Tower Hamlets Labour Party has welcomed the move by Robinson and Carroll to leave the EDL.
Labour’s Candidate for Mayor of Tower Hamlets, John Biggs said: “This signal is welcome but we need to see something more substantial before concluding that real change has happened.
“The history of far right groups is that they often splinter and collapse but that another then emerges, so we should assume a very real threat remains.”
Robinson and Carroll hope to continue to counter Islamist ideology through non-violent, democratic processes.
A statement on the EDL website explains that the group is still determined to fulfill their declared mission, noting their next demonstration in Bradford will go ahead as planned.
The statement said: “We are grateful to Tommy and Kev for their hard work and dedication in helping to set up such a large and strong organisation as the EDL four years ago.
“We can easily appreciate the pressures and strain their leadership of the EDL has placed upon Tommy and Kev, not just personally, but also on their families and those dear to them.”
Maajid Nawaz, Chairman and co-founder of Quilliam, a counter extremism think tank that facilitated their resignations, said: “This represents not a change but a continuation for us, as challenging extremism of all kinds forms the basis of our work.
“We have been able to show that Britain stands together against extremism regardless of political views and hope to continue supporting Tommy and Kevin in their journey to counter Islamism and neo-Nazi extremism.”