One dead, several injured as van driven through crowd outside London mosque

Isaac Cain
June 19, 2017

The Muslim Council tweeted that worshipers were struck by a van as they were leaving prayers near the Finsbury Park mosque.

"Over the past weeks and months, Muslims have endured many incidents of Islamophobia, and this is the most violent manifestation to date", the Guardian quoted Khan as saying.

Prime Minister Theresa May described the attack as a "terrible incident" but said it is a "potential terrorist attack" and that she would "chair an emergency meeting" later Monday morning.

A van has collided with pedestrians outside the well-known Finsbury Park Mosque in London, injuring several people.

Ratib Al-Sulaman told CNN he was sitting with friends two minutes away, when an "incident in front of the mosque" occurred.

They said officers have responded with other emergency services including the London Ambulance Service who have sent a "number of resources" to the scene.

Videos from the scene posted on Twitter showed crowds of people surrounding a police van that apparently held the driver of the van.

Police have also denied rumors that a knife was involved.

A "major incident" was declared by the Metropolitan Police after a white van ploughed into pedestrians on Seven Sisters road outside the Muslim Welfare Centre, around midnight.

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The mosque itself gained notoriety for sermons by radical cleric Abu Hamza al-Masri, who was sentenced to life in a USA prison in January 2015 after his conviction on terrorism-related charges.

Abdulraman Aidroos, who witnessed the incident, said "a white British man" shouted, "I am going to kill Muslims" before driving his vehicle into pedestrians. "There has been one person arrested".

Harun Khan, the head of the MCB, said the van had "intentionally" run over people leaving night prayers.

'I'm totally shocked at the incident at Finsbury Park tonight. The council called on the authorities to increase security around mosques.

Witnesses said the man was "smiling" and "happy" as he was placed under citizen's arrest. Five people were killed in that attack.

Britain's terrorist alert has been set at "severe" meaning an attack is highly likely.

No other details were immediately available.

Eight people were killed on June 3 when three Islamist militants drove into pedestrians on London Bridge and even stabbed people at nearby restaurants.

On May 22, a suicide attack killed 22 people and injured almost 60 after an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester.

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