Birmingham mosque attack: Worshipper set alight on way home from mosque
The victim suffered burns to his face after being attacked while walking home from a mosque in Birmingham.
A man has been arrested on suspicion of attempted murder after a Muslim worshipper was set alight in the street as he walked home from a mosque in Birmingham.
The victim suffered burns to his face when he was sprayed with an unknown substance and had his jacket torched on Shenstone Road in Edgbaston just after 7pm on Monday.
The man, who was walking home from Dudley Road mosque, was taken to hospital with serious injuries which are not believed to be life-threatening.
The suspect, whose age was not given, was arrested on the same road as the alleged attack and is in custody, with counter-terrorism police involved in the investigation.
Chief Superintendent Richard North, Commander at Birmingham police, said: “Our investigation continues with support from Counter Terrorism Policing West Midlands CTU who have access to specialist capabilities to help establish the full circumstances surrounding the incident.”
West Midlands Police said they were aware of a video being circulated on social media showing a man being set alight and are examining it as part of their investigations.
Chief Supt Richard North added: "We are keeping an open mind to the motive of the attacker and we won’t speculate further at this stage.
“We’re examining CCTV and speaking to witnesses. I’ve been speaking to people this morning, and so I know just how concerned they are and that people are after answers.
“We are determined to get those answers as soon as possible, and I’d urge the community to work with us and to avoid any speculation at this stage.”
Police are also looking into whether a similar attack in west London, where an 82-year-old man was set on fire outside a mosque, is linked.
The Metropolitan Police previously said the victim was set alight as he left the West London Islamic Centre on Singapore Road in Ealing at around 8pm on 27 February.
Relatives of a worshipper set alight in Birmingham asked people to pray for him as he was treated in hospital.
Coun Rizwan Jalil, who also sits on West Midlands Fire Authority, was at the scene on Tuesday morning.
He said: "I’m absolutely appalled by this vile attack on an elderly respected gentleman. He is a pillar of this community who has lived here for well over 20 years.
"He has children, a large family. He doesn’t deserve to be a victim of this brutal attack. No-one does. He was returning home from the mosque when it happened.
"The police are investigating and if anyone has any information - please contact them."
Birmingham Ladywood MP Shabana Mahmood added: “I was appalled to hear of this shocking attack in our community.
"I am in contact with the victim’s family and I am sending them thoughts and prayers.
“I have been working closely with the police, local councillors, the community to support the ongoing investigation.”
Dudley Road was temporarily blocked by police vans following the incident.