Warnings over hate crime after Paris attacks

Picture: TSPL
Picture: TSPL
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First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has vowed hate crime will not be tolerated amid a number of Scottish arrests in wake of the Paris attacks.

It came as Police Scotland confirmed it had made a number of arrests in connection with hate crimes following the terrorist attacks.

In one incident a couple were assaulted as they closed their takeaway restaurant in Fife during the early hours of Sunday morning.

Mohammed Khalid and his wife were reportedly set upon by a group of around 15 people in Methil.

Police are also investigating online abuse directed at SNP international development minister Humza Yousaf.

Ms Sturgeon said: “There is absolutely no place for bigotry and prejudice in Scotland and this government is clear that any form of hate crime is totally unacceptable and will not be tolerated in 21st century Scotland.”

The first minister added: “I urge people not to let these terrorists win by dividing us and driving a wedge between the multi-cultural society Scotland is home to. We are stronger when united and that is one of our strengths.”

Flags at Scottish Government buildings and at the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh were flown at half mast today as a mark of respect for those that lost their lives.

A representative of the French Consulate will be in Holyrood tomorrow to hear the presiding officer and party leaders pay their respects to those affected by the attacks in Paris.

Nabil Shaikh, general secretary of Glasgow Central Mosque, said there had been a number of Islamophobic attacks in Glasgow over the weekend.

He said: “These crimes are not in the name of Islam, they are not Muslims, full stop.

“So, we need to educate people that whilst they might go around hijacking our religion to serve their own causes, this has nothing to do with Islam and we do not consider them Muslims.”

In a statement, Deputy Chief Constable Iain Livingstone said: “Police Scotland have investigated instances of crime since the events in Paris on Friday that have been motivated by religious hatred. These crimes have been both online and in public. Arrests have been made.

“Police Scotland will not tolerate any form of hate crime and I urge everyone across the country to continue working together to ensure that no one feels threatened or marginalised.”