The Scotland Yard on Wednesday said they have launched a full investigation into the anti-Islamic slogans that were spray-painted on a building close to a mosque and cultural centre in south London.
Officers of the Scotland Yard were called at around 11 am near the North Brixton Islamic Cultural Centre on Brixton Road, following reports that “anti-Islamic slogans” had been spray-painted on a building nearby. Authorities said they were working alongside Lambeth Council to remove the “offensive remarks” from the building in Brixton as soon as possible. “Inquiries are ongoing at this time as part of a full investigation,” they added.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan said he was “disgusted” by the graffiti, which comes just days after anti-Semitic symbols were daubed across several shop fronts and a synagogue in north London.
“Disgusted to hear that Islamophobic slogans have been spray-painted near the North Brixton Islamic Centre. Metropolitan Police are working with Lambeth Council to have them removed,” Khan tweeted. He added, “Let me be clear: all prejudice is cowardly and criminals will face the full force of the law.”
The Metropolitan Police in its statement said, “Shockingly, hate crime affects people from all walks of life and impacts on communities across London. All members of our communities have the right to go about their daily lives without fear of verbal, physical or written abuse. The Met does not tolerate any form of discrimination, and we are committed to tackling offences like this as thoroughly as possible.”
Florence Eshalomi, the local Labour MP for Vauxhall, tweeted: “Disturbing to hear of a racist incident at the North Brixton Islamic cultural centre – it was reported that anti-Islamic slogans had been spray-painted on [the] building opposite the cultural centre.”
Racist and religious hate crimes in London have increased in recent months, following the Christchurch mosque shootings, London Bridge attack by Usman Khan and lack of action against Islamophobia by the ruling Conservative Party.
According to Metropolitan Police, there were 1,630 hate offences recorded in March after the Christchurch shooting. Of these, 156 were Islamophobic — almost double the number recorded the previous month. Campaigners said that there has seen an unprecedented spike in reports of anti-Muslim hate crimes in UK since the attack in New Zealand.
Four days ago, anti-Jewish racist graffiti was painted across north of London at night.
The Metropolitan Police confirmed officers were investigating after a synagogue and shopfronts in Hampstead and Belsize Park were vandalised.
The graffiti painted showed a red or purple Star of David — the Jewish symbol — along with the date ‘9/11’ — a reference to a racist conspiracy theory which claims Jewish people were behind the terrorist attacks.