Woolwich: Increased attacks on Muslims since killing

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AN INTER-FAITH organisation dedicated to tackling extremism says there has been a sharp rise in the number of attacks on Muslims following the killing of Lee Rigby.

Faith Matters said it had recorded 212 incidents since last Wednesday, up from the usual tally of between four and six per day.

Meanwhile, Drummer Rigby’s regiment, the Royal Fusiliers, has issued a notice to veterans and serving soldiers warning them about being associated with far-right groups.

Brigadier Ian Liles, regimental secretary to the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers, wrote: “It is wrong and disgraceful that the death of one of our own should be exploited in this manner and that dishonour, by wrongful association, is brought on to the regiment.”

In a separate notice, Colonel James Stopford warned: “Extremist organisations (English Defence League in particular) will seize any opportunity to align veterans with their cause.”

Yesterday afternoon, religious leaders in Woolwich gathered at the Greenwich Islamic Centre after Friday prayers to encourage peace in the community.

Far-right groups such as the English Defence League (EDL) and British National Party (BNP) have been accused of exploiting the killing of Drummer Rigby to stir up tensions.

The EDL held a rally in Woolwich hours after Drummer Rigby was killed and another at Downing Street on Monday.