Rotherham mosques on alert over hate letters

Rotherham mosques on alert over hate letters

By Antony Clay | 11/05/2018

Rotherham mosques on alert over hate letters

MOSQUES in Rotherham are being urged to be on their guard following a new wave of extreme right wing hate mail.

Letters threatening violence have been sent out across the UK in the style of the so-called Punish a Muslim Day intimidation in recent months.

Tell MAMA, a group which monitors anti-Muslim hate crimes, is urging mosques to watch out for the letters — and to report them if they land on the doormat.

The group has received reports about the new set of letters which have been linked to the perpetrator of the Punish a Muslim Day messages which sparked alarm across the country earlier this year.

The letters contain similar symbolism, postmarks and references to far-right individuals as the previous hate mail.

Tell MAMA has reported the latest letters to police forces and is concerned that the messages are far more aggressive than on previous occasions.

A spokesman said: “To date the group, we aware of five letters across the country but more may have been sent out.”

No letters are believed to have been received in Rotherham to date but Tell MAMA is urging mosques to report any to it or the police on 101.

Iman Atta, director of Tell MAMA, said: “It is essential that mosques report in hate and threatening letters and materials.

“Tell MAMA is aware of a campaign that is in play and where material is being sent to mosques.

“Hate material needs to be reported to the police and/or to Tell MAMA so that we can send it on to law enforcement.

“We want to reassure mosques that the risk is very low and that a calm and a focussed approached to tackling this hate is needed.

“We are working closely with police forces on this.”

Last year, the Advertiser reported that Tell MAMA had received reports of at least 19 crimes against Muslim people in Rotherham — more than one a month, with the majority being assaults.

The spokesman said it had “not picked up any cases in the Rotherham area as of yet”.

The hate mail is being investigated by the Counter Terrorism Unit (CTU).

A CTU North East spokeswoman said: “We are not aware of any reports in the Rotherham area.”