British Police Probing Attack Outside Mosque as Terrorist Act

A forensic tent and police are seen on Seven Sisters Road looking to Finsbury Park Mosque after a vehicle struck pedestrians in north London, June 19, 2017.

A forensic tent and police are seen on Seven Sisters Road looking to Finsbury Park Mosque after a vehicle struck pedestrians in north London, June 19, 2017.

 

Authorities said officers arrested the 48-year-old driver of the van, who had been detained by members of the public at the scene.

Basu said it appeared the man was the sole attacker. He praised those who detained him, calling their restraint "commendable."

Finsbury Park Mosque, London
Finsbury Park Mosque, London

"What it proves to me is that Londoners will act together to protect themselves, but they will do so in a way that doesn't feed into terrorists' and extremists' hands," Basu said.

He added that the 10 people injured were from the Muslim community, and that investigators are "keeping an open mind" about the motive for the attack.

Prime Minister Theresa May said what happened Monday was "an attack on Muslims near their place of worship," and that "hatred and evil of this kind will never succeed."

Harun Khan, secretary-general of the Muslim Council of Britain, said that based on accounts from witnesses the driver was "motivated by Islamophobia."

Police officers man on Fonthill road near Finsbury Park station after a vehicle struck pedestrians in north London, June 19, 2017.
Police officers man on Fonthill road near Finsbury Park station after a vehicle struck pedestrians in north London, June 19, 2017.

"Given we are approaching the end of the month of Ramadan and the celebration of Eid with many Muslims going to local mosques, we expect the authorities to increase security outside mosques as a matter of urgency," Khan said in a statement.

A Metropolitan Police statement said that due to the nature of the attack, "extra policing resources have been deployed in order to reassure communities, especially those observing Ramadan."

Britain, especially London, has been on edge over several recent incidents, including last month's terror bombing in Manchester and the recent vehicle attack and stabbings near London Bridge.

Login