Teens held over mosque arson: Britain
Britain’s police have arrested four teenagers in connection with a “racist” arson attack on a mosque in Staffordshire, which damaged the newly completed building.
Staffordshire police said three men and a woman, aged 16 to 19, were arrested after an investigation into the fire at the mosque in Hanley, Stoke-On-Trent.
A blaze alert came at around 6:30 after CCTV footage showed smoke coming out of the building.
Police said they are examining any connection between damage to a nearby gas main and the fire, which did not affect the mosque’s structure.
“We are treating this incident as a racist attack on a religious building,” said Chief Inspector Wayne Jones, who called the attack ‘appalling.’
“Local neighborhood police officers are meeting with members of the community to keep them informed and to address their concerns and obvious anger about this criminal incident,” Jones added.
Police said they are questioning the four suspects while reviewing CCTV footage from the area and leading house-to-house inquiries.
Stoke-On-Trent has been the scene of racial tensions against ethnic minorities including Muslims after the far-right British National Party won five seats at the local council elections in May.
Ethnic minorities comprise some 7 percent of the city’s population.
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