Anti-Muslim backlash intensifies
July 28, 2005
Written by IRR News Team
The anti-Muslim backlash has intensified in the three weeks following the London bombings.
Muslim organisations monitoring attacks report that the numbers are increasing rapidly. According to the Islamic Human Rights Commission they have risen thirteen-fold since 7 July. The Muslim Safety Forum reports that ‘faith-related’ attacks in London have risen by 500 per cent since the same period last year. Below we survey a cross-section of attacks reported in the media over the past week.
- 27 July 2005: Surrey police arrest a 67-year-old man in connection with an amateur radio station, which is alleged to have made comments thought likely to incite religious and racial hatred. The man has been bailed pending further police inquiries until 9 September. (BBC News 27.7.05)
- 26 July 2005: Victim Support in Nottinghamshire reports that racist attacks have doubled since the London bombings; 70 incidents have been reported compared with 40 in the same period last year. (BBC News 26.7.05)
- 24 July 2005: Two Asian restaurant workers are injured after being racially assaulted at the Cottage Tandoori in Atherstone. One man suffers cuts and a chipped tooth and the other is stabbed. Police arrest two people nearby and are treating the attack as racially motivated. (IC Coventry 26.7.05 and BBC News 25.7.05)
- 24 July 2005: The National Front holds a 300-strong demonstration, chanting racist slogans, outside Regents Park mosque as Muslims gather for a conference. (The Scotsman 25.7.05)
- 23 July 2005: A gang of youths gate-crash a party being held by Asians at a community centre in Leyland. The group racially abuse those gathered and throw stones and bottles. Police arrest nine people. (Leyland Today 28.7.05)
- 22 July 2005: The unoccupied Aylesbury home of Germaine Lindsay, one of the London bombers, is targeted; police are called after petrol is smelt. Robert Cusworth, 20, and two unnamed 17-year-olds are later charged with arson and recklessly endangering life. (BBC News 25.7.05)
- 22 July 2005: A shop owned by Muslims in the Harehills area of Leeds is set alight in an arson attack. The owner, Iqbal Khan, reports that four White youths had set a fire and then run from the shop. (New York Times 23.7.05)
- 22 July 2005: South East Wales Race Equality Council reports a ‘very big’ rise in reported incidents of racist abuse, mainly in the Newport area. Over 30 incidents have been reported in two weeks, the usual rate being 10 incidents a month. (BBC News 22.7.05)
- 22 July 2005: Devon and Cornwall police says that it has had eleven suspected racist attacks reported to them since 15 July. (BBC News 22.7.05)
- 22 July 2005: In the early hours of the morning in Adlington, Lancashire, a gang of White men attack a car carrying Asians who suffer minor injuries. Three men are later charged. (BBC News 24.7.05)
- 22 July 2005: Two restaurant workers escape serious injury after the flat in which they are sleeping, above an Indian restaurant in Bournemouth, is set alight. Police say they are treating the arson attack as racially motivated. (BBC News 25.7.05)
- 21 July 2005: Two men are bailed and ordered to report back to Merseyside police in September in connection with an arson attack on Wirral Islamic Cultural Centre, Shajalal mosque in Birkenhead on 9 July. One man has been charged on suspicion of arson with intent to endanger life. (BBC News 21.7.05)
- 20 July 2005: A window is smashed at the Sheikh Kalifa buildings which house the Centre of Islamic studies at Lampeter University. (Muslim News 27.7.05)
- 15 July 2005: A racist letter threatening to kill Muslims and burn mosques is sent to Shah Jalal mosque and Islamic centre in Cardiff; animal parts are also left at the mosque. (South Wales Echo 19.7.05)
- 15 July 2005: A brick is thrown through the window of a mosque in Northampton. A witness reports seeing a gang of youths in the area. (BBC News 18.7.05)
- 13 July 2005: A 26-year-old man is racially abused, punched and head-butted by a White man in Leamington Spa. (Leamington Spa Courier 20.7.05)
- 11 July 2005: Martin Toye, 33, enters a Lewisham shop from which he is banned, and accuses its Asian owner of being a terrorist and playing a part in the London bombings. He pleads guilty the next day to using racially aggravated language and behaviour and is sentenced to 26 weeks in prison and an ASBO. (Lewisham & Greenwich News Shopper 26.7.05)
- 10 July 2005: Arsonists target an Asian off-licence in Oxton, Wirral. (Liverpool Daily Post 12.7.05)
See also IRR News story The anti-Muslim backlash begins and IRR News story The anti-Muslim backlash continues. The Institute of Race Relations is monitoring racist incidents. Please contact us if you have any information on attacks committed in the wake of the London bombings. Alternatively you can report racist incidents to the police or the Islamic Human Rights Commission who have created an on-line reporting form that can be filled in anonymously. See the Islamic Human Rights Commission on-line racist incident reporting form.
The Institute of Race Relations is precluded from expressing a corporate view: any opinions expressed are therefore those of the authors.