Two men arrested over Birmingham mosque hammer attacks

Two men have been arrested in relation to a series of attacks on mosques in Birmingham.

Five mosques had their windows smashed on Thursday and a 34-year-old man from Perry Barr handed himself into a police station.

A 38-year-old man from Yardley was arrested earlier after being detained by members of the community.

Both men were being held on suspicion of racially aggravated criminal damage, West Midlands Police said.

The force said its investigation continued to be supported by West Midlands Counter Terrorism Unit.

The mosques that had their windows smashed were:

  • Witton Islamic Centre in Witton Road, Aston
  • Jame Masjid in Birchfield Road, Perry Barr
  • Jam-E-Masjid Qiblah Hadhrat Sahib Gulhar Shareef in Slade Road, Erdington
  • Masjid Faizul Islam on The Broadway, Aston
  • The Muslim Community Centre Aston, in Albert Road, Aston

Adil Parker, of the Birmingham Council of Mosques, previously said the community had been “taken aback” by the vandalism, some of which was carried out with a sledgehammer.

“The congregation is feeling fearful, they feel vulnerable and there is a lot of angst,” he said.

Assistant Chief Constable Matt Ward said the arrests represented “a significant step forward” but the investigation into the motive for the attacks continued.

“It remains incredibly important that we unite together against those who seek to create discord, uncertainty and fear,” he said.

The force said increased patrols would continue at key locations and security advice was being offered to religious establishments across the West Midlands.

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