Window smashed at Birmingham mosque – BBC News

Window smashed at Birmingham mosque - BBC News
How do UK Muslims feel after series of Islamophobic attacks?
Damage not linked to attacks on five other mosques, for which a man has been held under the Mental Health Act

Police are examining CCTV after criminal damage was caused to the building in Cromer Road, Balsall Heath, on Saturday morning. Detectives do not believe the incident is linked to other attacks on mosques in the city earlier this week.

An investigation involving counter-terrorism officers was launched after five mosques had their windows broken with a sledgehammer in the early hours of Thursday morning.

A 38-year-old man from Yardley, who was arrested after being detained by members of the community on Friday afternoon, has been released without charge and will face no further action, the force added.

West Midlands police said a 34-year-old man arrested on suspicion of racially aggravated criminal damage after handing himself into a city police station on Friday has been detained under the Mental Health Act.

Birmingham mosque attack captured on CCTV as police step up security for Friday prayers

No one else is being sought in relation to the first five incidents and detectives do not believe the suspect was part of an organised group, although the investigation is ongoing.

West Midlands Police said a 34-year-old man from Perry Barr handed himself into a city police station and has since been arrested on suspicion of racially aggravated criminal damage.

A 38-year-old man from Yardley, who was arrested after being detained by members of the community on Friday afternoon, has been released without charge and will face no further action.

Police have said increased patrols will continue at key locations to reassure communities and security advice is being provided to religious establishments across the West Midlands.

Counter-terror Officers Investigate Linked Attacks on 5 Mosques in UK

Assistant chief constable Matt Ward of West Midlands police said: We continue to work in partnership with mosques and local communities around the West Midlands.

Officers received reports of vandalism at Al Habib Trust in Birchfield Road at 2.32am and then attended a second attack at the Ghousia Mosque in Slade Road, Erdington, at 3.14am.

It is incredibly important that we unite together against those who seek to create discord, uncertainty and fear.

The investigation, involving counter-terrorism officers, began in the early hours of Thursday morning after four mosques had their windows broken with a sledgehammer overnight.

After New Zealand massacre and string of Birmingham mosque attacks, UK Muslims remain concerned over communitys safety.

Assistant Chief Constable Matt Ward said: "This is a significant step forward in our inquiries however the investigation continues into the motive for the incidents.

Manchester, UK – In the early hours of Thursday, five mosques in the English city of Birmingham were damaged – the latest in a string of Islamophobic attacks in the UK.

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The spate of vandalism came just days after a gunman killed 50 worshippers during Friday prayers at two mosques in New Zealand, placing Muslim communities in the UK and around the world on heightened alert amid concerns over the safety of their communities.

While security has been stepped up at mosques across Britain amid a police investigation into the incidents in Birmingham, Muslims in the UK say more needs to be done to prevent such attacks from happening. 

As bad as the Birmingham attacks were, they are a continuation of previous incidents, many of which were much worse. With the incidents being on the back of the New Zealand attacks, peoples fears are more heightened.

Man detained over Birmingham mosque hammer attacks

Every single one of us who goes to the mosque could picture themselves in that mosque in New Zealand, living those exact moments. With guys going around Birmingham smashing up mosques, it brings it a bit [closer to] home.

People will continue to join congregational prayers at their local mosques, but conversations about increasing security have become more urgent. Since these incidents, several Birmingham mosques have beefed up their security and are holding conversations about what more needs to be done.

CCTV examined after sixth mosque attacked in Birmingham

There is a big concern among parents with regards to the security of their children at schools. They want to make sure we have measures in place to avoid what happened in New Zealand repeating itself here.

We have since increased security and CCTV on our premises and are looking with the police at other protective measures we can take ensure everyones safety and security. 

As a woman who is visibly Muslim, Ive felt somewhat apprehensive and vulnerable over the past week. People need to understand that what they say has an impact on what happens on the streets – and the media has a huge responsibility to play in that regard.

Also, while the response in New Zealand has been overwhelming support for the Muslim community, the response in the UK seems to be more clinical, and there are always explanations to justify what happened. 

Following the [2017] attack at Finsbury Park Mosque in north London for example, we did get support but there wasnt an outpour of sympathy and an understanding for what we were experiencing as a community. 

One of the things that people are waking up to [since the incidents] is that Islamophobia exists and is growing. People are starting to ask where is it [Islamophobia] coming from and what is going to be done about the anti-Muslim narrative in the media and rhetoric among politicians.

Muslim communities around the UK have long been complaining about the rise of Islamophobia and fears of attacks like this.

This fear isnt just restricted to the rise of the far right; its also about mainstream media outlets reporting inaccurately and unfairly about Muslims; its about 31 percent of schoolchildren thinking Muslims are taking over the UK; its about the fact that over 50 percent of hate crimes in the UK are directed towards Muslims.

The government has made some commitments to increase funding, but this is not proportional to the risk that Muslims are feeling.

As Ramadan approaches, Muslims will be hyper-visible and will visit mosques in more numbers and more frequently. The funding needs to be increased, it needs to be immediately available and more easily accessible for mosques and other Islamic community centres to apply for.

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