UKIP leader Nigel Farage has been compared to a Nazi propagandist after unveiling a new poster featuring a long line of refugees with a call to “take back our borders.”
Farage revealed the controversial poster, which has also appeared in the local press, at an event in London on Thursday.
The UKIP MEP said EU bureaucrats made a “fundamental error” when they allowed refugees into Europe at the height of the migrant crisis last year. He argues the decision threatens Britain’s security.
However, UKIP’s choice of image has done little to shake off accusations of fascism. The photo bears an uncanny resemblance to a Nazi propaganda film which described Jewish refugees as “parasites.”
Twitter user and legal assistant Brendan Harkin compared the billboard to a 1941 Nazi newsreel which shows the forced march of Bessarabian Jews in Romania.
A digital version of the video can be watched on the website of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
Another Twitter user sourced the original photo of Syrian refugees and found something intriguing.
It appears the UKIP strapline conveniently blocks out a very noticeable white man in the crowd.
Farage was accused of exploiting Europe’s biggest refugee crisis since World War II for political gain.
“Using the innocent victims of a human tragedy for political propaganda is utterly disgusting. Farage is engaging in the politics of the gutter,” said Green MP Caroline Lucas.
Scottish National Party (SNP) leader Nicola Sturgeon described the poster as “disgusting,” while US-British playwright Bonnie Greer tweeted a photo of the billboard alongside a quote from Nazi military leader Hermann Goring.
“All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked. Works the same way in any country.”
Conservative MP Neil Carmichael said Britain can only deal with the issue of immigration by “working together with the European countries that face the same challenges.”
Labour MP and former housing minister Yvette Cooper slammed the UKIP billboard for “exploiting the misery” of Syrian refugees.
“We rely on other EU countries doing asylum checks and coping with this crisis long before it ever reaches Britain’s shores – ripping up cooperation with the EU would make it much harder to stop the people smugglers, help refugees or prevent illegal migration,” she said.
“No country can cope with something like this alone.”