Anti-fascist magazine Searchlight has launched a new campaign urging LGBT voters to help prevent the British National Party from gaining a foothold in the European elections.

The campaign, called HOPE Not Hate, is encouraging voters to exercise their democratic right on June 4th so that the controversial party cannot gain seats in the European parliament.

Anthony McCaul, of the Manchester branch of the campaign, told the Lesbian and Gay Foundation that everyone should challenge the BNP.

He said: “HOPE Not Hate Manchester is all about bringing together people from across Manchester to stand up for our city and stand against the racist, homophobic BNP.

“HOPE Not Hate is a broad coalition of faith groups, community organisations, individuals, trade unions, celebrities, businesses and political parties which has come together to encourage as many people as possible to vote in the European elections on June 4th.”

He added: “HOPE Not Hate is not about telling people who to vote for, that’s up to everyone. What we are about is making sure that the vast majority of decent, tolerant Mancunians understand that the only way to defeat the BNP and stop them gaining a seat in this years Euro elections is to get out there and vote.”

Last month, deputy leader of the Labour Party Harriet Harman told PinkNews.co.uk that the expected low turn-out in the European Elections may give parties such as the BNP a greater chance of winning seats.

She said: “There’s no doubt about it that the BNP are homophobic and reactionary, as well as racist. We saying that that should be a major motivation for people to vote.”