Letter About “Punish A Muslim Day” Send Shock Waves in UK
This time the Muslim community in UK became the target of hate letters sending shock waves throughout the country. Individuals in five areas namely Bradford, London, Leicester, Sheffield and Cardiff were randomly selected to send the letters containing highly venomous content.
April 3, 2018 was deemed to be ‘Punish a Muslim Day’ with the letter content further specifying varying points for performing different acts of violence. Scarf removal from a woman’s head got 25 points; murder of a Muslim earned 500 points while a mosque shelling as per the letter got 1000 points.
London’s Metropolitan Police have told its citizens to be alert and watchful and assured that investigations by officials from counter-terrorism unit were in progress. The North East Counter Terrorism Unit instructed the recipients to notify their local police. Bradford’s Liberal Democrat Councilor, Riaz Ahmed was one of the recipients of the letter. It was later ascertained that about three hateful letters were being posted to Bradford addresses.
The date significance is still unclear. One of the establishments tracking crimes against the Muslim community by name ‘Tell Mama’ indicated the letter number to be in two-digit figures and disclosed that it was helping the police in their investigation. The Director of this unit stated that the letters had sent fear ripples among the public who were asking if it was safe for them and their kids to be outdoors. The public were being instructed to stay calm, be alert and not get alarmed and panicky.
The letters were targeted at European countries including Britain which had minority, migrant Muslim populace. As per statistics provided by the Home Office, the rising Muslim population has led to a rise of about 29% in the hate crime numbers in UK and Wales.
In this regard, arrests had been made of Jayda Fransen and Paul Golding, leaders of an extreme right group called ‘Britain First’ in December 2017 for online posting of hateful videos of Muslim harassment in May. Both are facing a prison sentence.