There has been a fivefold rise in hate crimes against Muslims across Britain in the days since Sunday’s London Bridge terror attack, where assailants ran over pedestrians and went on a stabbing spree at a nearby restaurant, killing 7 people and injuring 48 more, The Independent reported Wednesday.
On Tuesday, police officers handled 20 crimes specifically targeted at Muslims, while the average for such crimes was 3.5 on a daily basis in 2017.
As a whole, there were 54 racially charged crimes on Tuesday, compared to the daily average of 38 this year.
The number of crimes also exceeded the levels recorded in the aftermath of the Paris attacks in November 2015 and the murder of British Army soldier Lee Rigby in May 2013, the report added.
Muslim community leaders had already warned of a hike in hate crimes following last month’s bombing at a concert in Manchester, which killed 22 people and injured around 120.
A similar rise in Islamophobia was reported in March, after terrorists killed five people in another car and knife attack.
Fiyaz Mughal, founder of Islamophobic helpline Tell Mama, warned of a “measurable and large spike” following the latest attack in London.
“We know from all of the terrorist attacks since 2011 that anti-Muslim hatred spikes sharply in our country after them,” he told The Independent.
“Terrorists are trying to divide our communities and society. People who target innocent Muslims who have nothing to do with extremism or terrorism are playing into the hands of Islamist extremist terrorists. This is what they want – divided societies and communities,” he added.
UK Prime Minister Theresa May has pinned the attacks on “evil Islamist extremism” and has pledged to fight this “perversion of Islam and the truth.”