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Islamophobic crime up 70% in London

According to the Met Police statistics, Islamophobic crimes have risen by 70% in the past year in London.

For the 12 months up to July, figures showed 816 Islamophobic crimes were committed this year compared with 478 for the previous year.

Reported incidents ranged from cyber-bullying and assaults to extreme violence.

It is reported that women were the primary targets of hate crimes according to tell MAMA, an organisation that monitors Islamophobic attacks, who said they accounted for 60% of crime.

The group told Inside Out London that those women wearing a face veil endured more “aggressive incidents”.

One of the largest increases was in Merton, south west London, which has witnessed a rise from eight incidents in the year up to July 2014 increasing the 263% in the following year.

The charity said female victims frequently avoided contacting the police because they feared it would make the situation worse.

Cdr Mak Chishty, the force’s lead for hate crime, said: “There are a number of reasons why Muslim women are targeted more than men.

“Their physical attire obviously says they are Muslim, they are normally by themselves and with children and the cowardice shown by perpetrators is that it is easier to attack a women with children than it is a man.”

Muslim convert and mother-of-two Joni Clark suffered several Islamophobic incidents and consequently moved her family from Penge in south east London, to Whitechapel in east London.

She said that “I receive abuse every single day. The attacks affect my children deeply and I fear for their safety so I feel I have no choice but to move.”

 

 

By Francesca Stainer

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