Theresa May: Attack on Muslims near mosque 'sickening'

Cheryl Sanders
June 19, 2017

A van ploughed into worshippers leaving a London mosque on Monday, killing at least one person and injuring 10 others in what witnesses said as a deliberate attack on Muslims. "Our priority is to assess the level and nature of injuries and ensure those in the most need are treated first and taken to hospital", he said.

She said the attack had "once again targeted the ordinary and the innocent going about their daily lives - this time, British Muslims as they left a mosque, having broken their fast and prayed together at this sacred time of year".

Witnesses of the suspected terrorist attack in north London's Seven Sisters Road told RT that the van driver "intentionally tried to crush people" as they exited a mosque after Ramadan evening prayers.

"The driver of the van - a man aged 48 - was found detained by members of the public at the scene", police report. "He was shouting: "All Muslims, I want to kill all Muslims", another witness, Khalid Amin, told BBC television.

In a statement at 04:46 am they said the incident was being investigated by counter-terrorism police.

"Police have confirmed this is being treated as a potential terrorist attack", U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May said, adding that she would chair an emergency meeting of her government later in the day.

Speaking to the BBC, he said it was a "despicable attack" which was meant to divide society, but added: "That will fail".

Counter-terror officials said they were closely monitoring terror activity linked to far-right groups but most of the recent attacks have been traced to individuals rather than groups.

"Over the past weeks and months, Muslims have endured many incidents of Islamophobia and this is the most violent manifestation to date".

The texts, reported by Terrorism analyst Michael Smith, were sent to a WhatsApp group called "War news/ Ummah [community] news" - which has more than 200 members - after this morning's terror attack in north London.

He hoped those who try to demonise the Muslim community for ulterior motives and to divide the country would not win.

"I offer my condolences to the family and friends of the man who has died, and our thoughts are with the people who have been injured, their family and friends".

He said: "The leader of the mosque said "You do not touch him".

The site of the incident is close to another mosque near the Finsbury Park on the same road.

The UK Muslim Council tweeted "we have been informed that a van has run over worshippers as they left Finsbury Park Mosque".

Eight other injured people were taken to hospitals after the crash early Monday morning. The London Ambulance Service said it was responding to the incident.

The driver of the van has reportedly been arrested. Three Muslim extremists who carried out the attack were killed by police.

A woman holds a sign reading "Leave our Muslim Neighbours Alone", as she stands near the scene in Finsbury Park area of north London after a vehicle was driven into pedestrians, on June 19, 2017. Vehicles have also been also used to attack the public on London's Westminster Bridge, in Nice, France, and in Berlin.

Ellie Goulding wrote: "Very sad to hear about the Finsbury Park terrorist incident".

Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour Party leader, said he was "totally shocked" by the event.

The incident is the latest traumatic terrorism attack to hit the United Kingdom, following the vehicle and knife attack in Westminster in March, a suicide bombing at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester in May, and the London Bridge and Borough Market attacks earlier this month.

Other reports by iNewsToday