World Bulletin / News Desk
A European anti-discrimination network on Monday called on EU member states to take "urgent" action against growing Islamophobia across Europe following a recent attack on a London mosque.
In a statement, the director of the Brussels-based European Network Against Racism (ENAR) strongly condemned the attack that killed at least one and injured 10 others outside a north London mosque early Monday.
The attack, in which the van driver seemed to deliberately ram the vehicle into a crowd of Muslim worshippers near Finsbury Park Mosque shortly after midnight, is being treated as a terrorist incident.
"This seems to be the latest and extremely violent manifestation of Islamophobia in Europe as we have been witnessing an increase in racist incidents and speech targeting Muslims across Europe," Michael Privot said.
"Action to address Islamophobia is now urgent, especially in a context of growing securitization of Muslims," he added.
ENAR director said that the EU and its member states had to challenge hatred and the discourses fueling Islamophobia across the continent.
He also urged the European governments to ensure that Muslim communities were not profiled as potential terrorists.
"They need to ensure hate crimes are sanctioned; support victims; and guarantee the safety of all citizens and residents," Privot said, warning that "failing to act will mean more causalities and more divisions".
Following the attack, London police have arrested a 48-year-old-man after members of the public apprehended him after he left the van and tried to flee the scene.
Most of the victims are thought to have left the Muslim Welfare House on Seven Sisters Road after Taraweeh prayers held during the holy month of Ramadan when the van mounted the pavement.
The accident happened late Friday when around 650 people were celebrating inside the tent in Sankt Johann am Walde in the north of the country.
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It said that armed police then arrived and used their weapons on the attacker and "liquidated" him.
The suspect's "identity is known to the police. He is an 18-year-old Moroccan citizen," it said, providing no other details about him.
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