Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

'Muslims Are Angry at Police'; Religious Leader Warns of Rising Tensions over Raid

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

'Muslims Are Angry at Police'; Religious Leader Warns of Rising Tensions over Raid

Article excerpt

Byline: ROB SINGH

THE NEW leader of Britain's Muslims has warned that tensions between the community and police have become strained following the huge raid on terrorist suspects in east London.

Dr Muhammad Abdul Bari visited residents and businesses near the scene in Forest Gate during his first public engagement since his election as secretary general of the Muslim Council of Britain.

Dr Bari also met councillors to discuss disquiet in the area's Muslim community fuelled by conflicting reports about what happened.

Abdul Kahar was shot in the shoulder during the operation on Lansdown Road on Friday. Both he and his brother Abdul Koyair were arrested on suspicion of being involved in a plot to make a chemical bomb.

Dr Bari told how members of the community were questioning what had taken place and warned that there could be a breakdown in trust of the police. He added: "The message is the confusion, its the frustration and to some extent anger.

"People want to know what exactly happened and about the intelligence - is it genuine information, is it flawed - these are the questions police have to answer as soon as possible."

He added: "What we need from them (the police) is to expedite things as soon as possible, three or four days frustration, confusion and anger in the community is not good."

He warned: "Trust could be an issue.

Trust could break down if things are not clarified as soon as possible."

In a direct call to the police, Dr Bari said: "Police have to come out with clarification, with a clear message about the operation that happened on Friday.

"People need to know exactly why this happened and about the intelligence, whether it was flawed, whether it was genuine. Time is a big factor for the community."

Muslim residents claimed they are under the microscope yet again because of terror investigations. …

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