Children in mosque placed on lockdown after delivery of threatening letter
Categories: Latest News
Tuesday November 07 2017
On Saturday 4 November, children in an Islamic school based in the Didsbury Mosque in South Manchester were placed on lockdown for several hours after a threatening letter containing a loose white powder was delivered to the mosque.
Manchester Evening News reported that the letter also contained an image of a skull and crossbones. When mosque leaders discovered the envelope, they promptly called the police and placed the building on lockdown.
Police and fire crews arrived at the site of Didsbury Mosque and Manchester Islamic Centre to examine the powder. Specialist officers determined that the powder was not noxious or harmful.
Dr. Faizan Awan, a spokesperson for Didsbury Mosque, noted that the threatening later was the latest in a series of attacks on the mosque. Two weeks before this incident, a box containing pork was delivered to the mosque.
Counter-terror police are investigating the incident as a hate crime. Police suspected the incident could be linked to a wider set of anti-Muslim hate crimes involving ‘malicious communications and suspicious packages’ sent across the UK and the US, but the police have since declared that there is no link.
Manchester has seen a significant spike in the reporting of racially and religiously-motivated hate crimes following the Manchester Arena terrorist attack in May 2017.
For information on reporting hate crimes in Greater Manchester, click here.
If you live in Manchester and would like to organise an event in your community during Hate Crime Awareness Week (5-12 February 2018), you can apply for funding here.
You can also report Islamophobia through MEND’s Islamophobia Response Unit.