Socialist Worker

Witness speaks out on Islamophobic attack in London

by Tomáš Tengely-Evans
Issue No. 2646

Thugs attack people leaving prayers at an east London mosque

Thugs attack people leaving prayers at an east London mosque


A Muslim woman has spoken out about the horror of an Islamophobic attack in east London in the wake of the fascist mass shootings in New Zealand.

Jusna from Tower Hamlets in east London was on her way to a vigil over the New Zealand mosque shootings, which had happened earlier on Friday. On her journey she witnessed an incident in which men with knives and hammers attacked worshipers at a mosque in Cannon Street, Whitechapel.

Jusna told Socialist Worker, “I was walking down to the vigil at about 1.15pm on Friday. I heard loud noises and saw a large crowd, then I saw the Asian boys chasing the car down the road.

“The car was carrying about four white young men, one of them was on the bonnet. It stopped right in front of me and they came out. I saw one of them had a big metal knife and I thought, ‘Oh my god’.”

They attacked the Asian men who had chased the car after they climbed out of it.

Jusna said, “They were shouting racist slurs at the boys, they started hitting the boys and hit one of them on the head.”

She added, “What really sickened me was that I was on my way to the vigil for the shootings in New Zealand. I was so personally affected when I heard about what happened in New Zealand - I was numbed, I was crying. And then this happened.”

Arrests

Police are investigating the incident and no arrests have been made so far.

Jusna said the New Zealand and east London attacks were “definitely connected” and that the men “knew what they were doing coming during the Jumu’ah” Friday prayer.

The vicious Islamophobia pushed by mainstream politicians and the media has given confidence to fascists, the far right and racists. Jusna said, “These are home-grown white supremacists who are acting on what they’ve seen.

“It’s about how the media portray the Muslim community.

“There was an incident about a blind man not being allowed into a taxi, but then the Daily Mail made its article about the taxi driver being Muslim. When they look at the shooter in New Zealand, they use an innocent childhood photograph.

“If you’re an Asian person, it would be different.”

Further evidence of the poisonous racist atmosphere that has been created came on Sunday. Police said they were investigating a suspected far right inspired attack in which a 19 year old man was stabbed.

One witness claimed a man was shouting "kill a Muslim" and "white supremacy".

The victim suffered non-fatal injuries after being struck by a man armed with a baseball bat and knife and shouting racist abuse in Stanwell, Surrey.

A man was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and a racially-aggravated public order offence.

Anti-racists must stand in solidarity with Muslim people who are facing attacks by fascists and racists and bearing the brunt of state-sponsored racism.


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