Counterterrorism Police Investigate After Five Mosques Vandalised in UK

BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - MARCH 21: People view damage to Jam-E-Masjid Qiblah Hadhrat Sahib Gulhar Shareef mosque on Slade Road after a hammer attack last night braking it's windows last night, on March 21, 2019 in Birmingham, England. Anti-terror police have being called in to investigate the hammer attcaks on five …
Christopher Furlong/Getty

Counterterrorism police are investigating after five mosques in the Birmingham area were vandalised.

West Midlands Police confirmed that their officers were working with the its Counter Terrorism Unit (CTU) to investigate after the windows of mosques and Islamic centres were smashed in a series of attacks that began in the early hours of the morning.

Officers were called at 2.32am to reports of a man smashing windows with a sledgehammer at the Jame Masjid mosque on Birchfield Road, but upon arrival determined the attack had happened earlier.

At 3.14am, police were alerted to a similar attack at the Jam-E-Masjid Qiblah Hadhrat Sahib Gulhar Shareef mosque on Slade Road, Erdington.

WMP then began a patrol of areas with mosques and found the Witton Islamic Centre on Witton Road, Aston, and a Muslim place of worship at Broadway, Perry Barr, had been vandalised as well.

At 10am, authorities were alerted by media that the Mosque and Muslim Community Centre in Albert Road, Aston, had also been vandalised.

Police and CTU believe at present that the attacks were linked, and were committed by one suspect.

West Midlands Police Chief Constable Dave Thompson said, “Since the tragic events in Christchurch, New Zealand, officers and staff from West Midlands Police have been working closely with our faith partners across the region to offer reassurance and support at mosques, churches and places of prayer.

“At the moment we don’t know the motive for last night’s attacks.

“What I can say is that the force and the Counter Terrorism Unit are working side-by-side to find whoever is responsible.

“At difficult times like this, it is incredibly important that everyone unites against those who seek to create discord, uncertainty and fear in our communities.”

Breitbart News reported on Wednesday that 12 Catholic churches had been desecrated in France in the space of one week in what the news website’s Rome bureau chief and faith correspondent Dr Thomas Williams called “an egregious case of anti-Christian vandalism.”

Speaking to Breitbart News Daily host and Breitbart News’s editor in chief Alex Marlow on Thursday, Dr Williams said, “I was surprised when I was researching the question of these 12 churches that had been desecrated this week, it turns out that this is a common thing in France. Throughout the last year, they were averaging two a day… some sort of vandalisation of churches.”

“To allow that kind of anti-Christian sentiment and to allow it to go on… it’s weird we never hear about it. We heard very much about any kind of Islamophobia… but when it’s directed against Christians for some reason this is something that is drastically under reported and it’s the most common form of religious persecution in the world.”

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