No fewer than five mosques in the English city of Birmingham were attacked overnight, police confirmed the incidence on Thursday in the latest spate of Islamophobic occurrences in Britain.
This has happened after a recent attack which claimed 50 lives by a right-wing terrorist at mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand.
The West Midlands Police revealed that detectives and counter-terrorism officers are on the investigation after windows were smashed at the mosques in Birmingham.
Officers reacted after reports of a man seen smashing windows with a sledgehammer at one mosque, the police said.
TellMAMA, a group monitoring anti-Muslim incidents tweeted that, “What is going on in our country? We are listing into a dark place.’’
The group disclosed that it had recorded more than seven other attacks on mosques across Britain after the reports of Islamophobia since the Christchurch murders.
According to Iman Abou Atta, TellMAMA’s director, “Attacks on five mosques in Birmingham show, once again, that Muslims are having to bear the brunt of the absolute hatred and bigotry of others.’’
“People cannot stand by now and say that it does not affect them,’’ He said.
“It affects our society, our communities and our country, and we must stand up against it.’’
The police said neighbourhood officers were “working closely with mosques’’ across the region on Thursday.
“Since the tragic events in Christchurch, New Zealand, officers and staff from West Midlands Police have been working closely with our faith partners across the region.
“To offer reassurance and support at mosques, churches and places of prayer,’’ West Midlands Police Chief Constable Dave Thompson said in a statement.
“At the moment we don’t know the motive for last night’s attacks,’’ Thompson added. ‘’At difficult times like this, it is incredibly important that everyone unites against those who seek to create discord, uncertainty and fear in our communities,’’ he said.
Shabana Mahmood, a member of parliament for Birmingham, said the reported attacks were “truly terrible.’’ “I would urge all residents to remain calm and call the police with any info you may have,’’ Mahmood tweeted.
The London’s Labour mayor Sadiq Khan said police in the British capital would increase patrols near mosques.
After the Christchurch attacks, Harun Khan, head of the Muslim Council of Britain, urged the government to “redouble its efforts to ensure mosques are protected.’’
Khan also urged “fellow Muslims to resist the temptation to roll up the banners in fear, as this attack was designed to do.’’