Attacks on Muslims soar in wake of Woolwich murder
By: Conal Urquhart
Source: The Guardian
Anti-Muslim attacks in Britain have soared since Wednesday’s murder of Drummer Lee Rigby in Woolwich.
Faith Matters, an organisation that works to reduce extremism, said it had been told of about 150 incidents in the last few days, compared to between four to eight cases before Wednesday.
Fiyaz Mughal, the director of Faith Matters, said incidents were happening on the streets and online. “What’s really concerning is the spread of these incidents. They’re coming in from right across the country,” he told the BBC.
“Secondly, some of them are quite aggressive; very focused, very aggressive attacks. And thirdly, there also seems to be significant online activity … suggesting co-ordination of incidents and attacks against institutions or places where Muslims congregate.”
Police have reported several arrests since Wednesday. Benjamin Flatters, 22, from Lincoln, was arrested on Thursday after complaints were made to Lincolnshire police about comments made on Twitter that were allegedly of a racist or anti-religious nature.
A second man was visited by officers and warned about his activity on social media, according to the police.
The charge comes after two men in Bristol were arrested and released on bail for making alleged offensive comments on Twitter about the murder. A 23-year-old and a 22-year-old, both from Bristol, were held under the Public Order Act on suspicion of inciting racial or religious hatred.
Detective Inspector Ed Yaxley of Avon and Somerset police said: “These comments were directed against a section of our community. Comments such as these are completely unacceptable and only cause more harm to our community in Bristol.”
Two men will appear at Thames magistrates court on Saturday charged with religiously aggravated threatening behaviour over an incident in an east London fast food restaurant on Thursday.
Labourer Toni Latcal, 32, and plasterer Eugen-Aurelian Eugen-Beredei, 34, both from London, were arrested following the incident at 9.15pm on Thursday. Latcal was charged with religiously aggravated threatening behaviour and causing criminal damage, while Eugen-Beredei was charged with religiously aggravated threatening behaviour.
In Hastings, Adam Rogers, 28, of Kingsman Street, Woolwich, was arrested on Friday and will appear at Brighton magistrates court on Saturday accused of sending an “offensive, indecent or menacing message” online.