Police examining a suspicious item found in a Walsall mosque have confirmed they are treating the incident as a hate crime. A police spokesperson said an explosion was heard by residents on Friday evening. On Saturday, the item was discovered by a member of the public and handed into the police. Superintendent Keith Fraser, the head of crime and operations for Walsall Police, said the incident was being treated as hate crime but the motive for placing the item near a mosque remained unclear.
Army experts ordered the evacuation of nearly 40 homes near the Rutter Street mosque in Walsall, West Midlands Police said. “We have launched a full investigation into the suspicious item that has been found, and what’s going to be the key to this is the public’s help in relation to helping us to understand why that suspicious item was in the area. ”So if anybody saw anything over the weekend I’d like them to call police on 101 or Crimestoppers 0800 555 111 .”
Officials from Walsall Council are working closely with the emergency services to support local people and minimise disruption in the area. Zahid Ali, Cabinet Member for Public Protection at Walsall Council, also spoke outside the mosque. Describing the incident as “unfortunate”, Mr Ali added: “It’s absolutely wonderful to see that the communities have come together supporting the residents, and most of those residents are now back in their homes.”
Zia Ul-Haq, who acts as a spokesman for the mosque and also sits on its committee, said: “First of all can I thank the police force and the local council for really supporting us on this occasion.
The police officer heralded a hero after being stabbed in the chest and stomach while he disarmed a knife-wielding attacker at a mosque is to be discharged from hospital. The 31-year-old officer was brutally attacked when he responded to an incident in Birmingham where a man who had brandished a knife was shouting “don’t mock Islam” and attacking worshippers. The alleged attacker was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and remains at a secure mental health unit after doctors deemed him unfit to be interviewed, West Midlands Police have confirmed.
Commenting on an official West Midlands Police Twitter account, the unidentified injured officer said: “Consultant has been in to see me this morning. Op went great. Will be discharged later today.” In the comment posted in the early hours of this morning, he also thanked medics and people at the mosque for their help during the incident last weekend, adding: “It means a lot to know the community has our backs.” Chief Superintendent Alex Murray, speaking yesterday, said there was nothing to suggest the incident was a hate crime, or that it was connected with other similar incidents in the wake of Drummer Lee Rigby’s death in Woolwich, south east London.
A 28-year-old man stabbed in the arm during the attack and a 36-year-old man who was stabbed once in the thigh remain in hospital in a stable condition, while a third man who suffered a hand injury is recovering at home.
Three men and a police officer are being treated in hospital after they were stabbed at a mosque, West Midlands Police have confirmed today. A 32-year-old man is now being questioned on suspicion of attempted murder, police said. Initial reports suggest an argument may have taken place inside the mosque prior to the attack. The male police officer was attacked after being called to attend reports that three men had been stabbed at the mosque in the Ward End area of Birmingham. All four men are described as in a stable condition. Mohammed Shafiq, the leader of national Muslim organisation the Ramadhan Foundation, said a nearby resident overheard an argument coming from inside the mosque and believes the attack followed a dispute between members. Officers were today conducting patrols in the area surrounding the mosque to reassure local residents. A cordon is in place while investigations continue at the mosque. Police are investigating whether the attack was a hate crime.
A racist killer was feared to be on the loose in Birmingham last night after a 75-year-old Muslim, retired baker with five daughters, two sons and 22 grandchildren, Mohammed Saleem had lived in Little Green Lane, Small Heath, Birmingham, with his wife, for 40 years. The man was murdered on his way home from evening prayer. Mr Saleem, who walked with a stick, was knifed four times in the back so viciously on Monday night that the wounds penetrated his chest. The man had no “defensive wounds”, was not robbed and his family have said there was no reason they knew why anyone would want to hurt him.
Yesterday, West Midlands Police launched a public appeal to trace a suspect caught on CCTV near the scene of the attack, which detectives believe could be racially motivated.
It was supposed to be a “peaceful” protest by a group opposed to Islamic law and what it perceives as radical Islam. Or at least that is how the right-wing English Defence League (EDL) would have liked Saturday’s demonstration to be received.
But many had their doubts. Chief among them, the West Midlands Police, which spent the previous fortnight meeting Muslim community leaders to ensure that they told their followers to stay away. Less than a month earlier, a visit by EDL supporters to the city ended in a feud between them and counter-demonstrators, mainly of Asian backgrounds, and 35 people were arrested.
About 100 EDL supporters descended on Birmingham on Saturday morning, some carrying signs reading “Islamic Extremists Out” and “Make Britain Safe”. Others screamed insults against Allah and Islam as they made their way to a nearby pub.
Hardline female ‘preachers of hate’ are radicalising Muslim women at one of Britain’s top mosques.
The Saudi Arabian preachers were secretly filmed ordering women to murder gays and ex-Muslims.
Undercover reporters from Channel 4’s Dispatches recorded the lectures in the women’s section of Regent’s Park Mosque in London. An unnamed Saudi woman is seen mocking other religions – labelling Christianity ‘vile’ and an ‘abomination’. Another, known as ‘Angelique’, claims Britain is a ‘land of evil’. The investigators attended lectures for two months at the mosque, which had promised a clean-up after another Dispatches probe just 18 months ago exposed it for spreading extreme Islamic views. During one sermon, a woman called Um Amira says: ‘He is Muslim, and he gets out of Islam…what are we going to do? We kill him, kill, kill.’ In the programme, to be screened tomorrow, she adds that women adulterers should be stoned to death and people who have sex before marriage should get ‘100 lashes’. Regent’s Park Mosque is one of the biggest and most prestigious Islamic institutions in the UK. Opened in 1944 by King George VI, it can hold up to 5,000 worshippers.
After the 2007 Dispatches investigation, the Crown Prosecution Service was asked to advise by West Midlands Police on whether the preachers featured in the programme should be prosecuted. Tom Harper reports.
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Police stopped two Christian preachers handing out Bible extracts in a Muslim area of the West Midlands and accused them of a “hate crime” by allegedly trying to convert Muslims, it has been claimed. A police community support officer (PCSO) is said to have told them: “You have been warned. If you come back here and get beaten up, well, you have been warned.” Americans Arthur Cunningham and Joseph Abraham are threatening to take West Midlands Police to court under the Human Rights Act if officers do not apologise. The force said the officer, Naeem Naguthney, aged 30, had been offered “guidance and advice” following an investigation into the dispute in the Alum Rock area of Birmingham. Abraham, aged 65, said: “He told us we were trying to convert Muslims to Christianity and that was a hate crime. He was very intimidating.” Cunningham, aged 48, a fellow American Baptist missionary, said: “He realised we were Americans and then started ranting at us about George Bush and American foreign policy. “He said we were in a Muslim area and were not allowed to spread our Christian message. “I am dumbfounded that the police seem so nonchalant. They seem content not to make it clear that what we were doing was perfectly legal. To suggest we were guilty of a hate crime for spreading God’s word is outrageous.”