22nd July 2013
* Muslim Community has borne the brunt of attacks, often violent, patiently and with dignity
* MCB Leadership visits West Midlands mosques
* MCB Writes to the Home Secretary and Communities Secretary, Urging a Concerted National response
The Muslim Council of Britain today wrote to the Home Secretary urging a serious national response to the spate of terrorist and arson attacks against mosques and Islamic institutions since May.
In the last month alone, three mosques have been targeted by terrorists who have left viable explosive devices at each site, a fourth mosque in Liverpool has had a controlled explosion carried out following reports of a suspicious package at the site. This follows the arson attack against a mosque in North London in June, which saw the building destroyed. This unprecedented escalation of violence against the Muslim community must be met by an urgent, coordinated national response by politicians, police and domestic security services.
Visiting the mosques at Walsall, Tipton and Wolverhampton on Saturday MCB secretary general, Farooq Murad and Deputy Secretary General, Dr. Shuja Shafi were briefed by the mosque and community leadership about the prompt response from the police and the solidarity within the community. They also gave suggestions for a better and more coordinated approach to the threat including MCB preparing a toolkit for its affiliates.
Farooq Murad, today said:
“Following the events in Woolwich there has been a significant increase anti-Muslim hate crimes across the UK. The community has patiently borne the brunt of these attacks despite condemning, in the strongest possible terms, the tragic murder of Drummer Lee Rigby. Despite this spike in incidences, there has yet to be a coordinated national effort to ensure that these sorts of attacks never happen again. It cannot be right that a minority community is allowed to be targeted in this manner.”
He further added, “The existence of viable explosive devices outside mosques should worry all those responsible for the safety and security of communities in the UK, it marks the crossing of a red line. Had these bombs exploded, people would have been killed. There is an urgent need for the government and police to respond with a coordinated national strategy so as to prevent further attacks.”
Writing to the Home Secretary, Farooq Murad sought clarification of how the government plans to respond to this dramatic escalation in violence. He said in his letter: “For many Muslim communities across this country, there is a palpable sense of fear.” “Many congregations who belong to our affiliates are understandably worried and feel that, while the local police are doing all they could to investigate these incidents, the national response has been far from satisfactory. We sincerely hope you can take this matter up as a matter of urgency and ensure peace and harmony is maintained between our communities.”
Notes to Editors:
1. The Muslim Council of Britain is the UK’s largest Muslim umbrella body with over 500 affiliated national, regional and local organisations, mosques, charities and schools.
2. Related MCB links