Two men arrested on suspicion of breaking into UK mosque

Mosque authorities increased security after intrusion in which two guards were injured

Two men have been arrested after allegedly forcing their way into the Dar Ul Isra Community Centre in Cardiff, Wales. Courtesy: Google Street View
Two men have been arrested after allegedly forcing their way into the Dar Ul Isra Community Centre in Cardiff, Wales. Courtesy: Google Street View

Two men have been arrested on suspicion of forcing their way into a mosque in Cardiff, Wales.

South Wales Police were called early on Sunday to the Dar Ul Isra Community Centre, in the Cathays area of the Welsh capital.

Police said they arrested two suspects from the Cardiff area, aged 18 and 19, accused of breaking into the mosque about 1.30am.

An investigation into the incident is continuing but officers are not looking for anyone else in connection with it, police said.

The mosque is open and operating as usual, a spokesman confirmed on Twitter.

While apprehending the trespassers, members of the mosque’s security team suffered minor injuries but have since been released from hospital after treatment.

“We will increase security presence at the centre for your added reassurance," the spokesman said.

"The police are yet to establish the motive or all the facts surrounding the incident.”

He said that people should avoid speculating and circulating unconfirmed information.

Worshippers at UK mosques have been under increased threat from terrorists since the Christchurch mosque attack on March 15, in which 50 people were killed and 40 wounded.

Hours after the New Zealand attack, two men in their twenties were caught on camera in London with a hammer before they attacked a worshipper near a mosque in East London.

Reports also emerged on Twitter that a group of men had been caught with flaming rags soaked in petrol outside a Muslim prayer centre in Southall, West London.

Security at British mosques has increased for the month of Ramadan.

In May, British Home Secretary Sajid Javid launched a £5 million (Dh18.3m) fund to help places of worship with security training and to share best practice to protect their worshippers.

The UK government said it would also consult the Anti-Muslim Hatred Working Group, Tell Mama, the Independent Advisory Group and other faith representatives and organisations on improvements to policy for protecting communities.

Tell Mama said it would provide training programmes and other support for mosques to strength safety procedures and raise awareness of threats.

The watchdog found that the UK had a 593 per cent rise in recorded Islamophobia a week after the Christchurch terrorist attacks.

Updated: June 3, 2019 12:01 AM

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