Sheffield residents must be 'eyes and ears' of police in fight against terror, says Muslim community leader

A Muslim community leader is calling on Sheffield residents to be the 'eyes and ears' of the police in the fight against terrorism following the atrocities in London.

Thursday, 23rd March 2017, 6:19 pm
Updated Friday, 24th March 2017, 10:08 am
The peace vigil this evening.

Mohammad Ali, chairman of the Pakistan Muslim Centre in Attercliffe, called for unity between faiths and said it was important to report anyone who is suspected to have been radicalised to police.

He was speaking ahead of a vigil at the centre this evening to remember the four people who died and the 29 people injured in yesterday's terror attack in London.

Mohammad Ali.

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Mr Ali said: "We must be the eyes and ears of the police and report incidents so that we can stop attacks from happening.

"Now is a time for unity. We must stand together and not be divided."

He added: "We are horrified by yesterday's events. Our thoughts are with the family and friends of those who died and those injured.

"No religion teaches such terrible acts. We cannot let the terrorists win. We must go on living our lives."

Mohammad Ali.

Mr Ali said he meets regularly with South Yorkshire Police commanders to share information and to talk about how to improve community relations. He added they are now seeking an emergency meeting with top officers to discuss the best way forward.

Meanwhile, today marks Pakistan Resolution Day - a national holiday in Pakistan - and Mr Ali said they considered cancelling their celebration. But instead they are holding a peace vigil for the victims and about 150 people were expected to attend this evening.

In addition, he said Muslims would also be paying their respects in mosques across the city at Friday prayers.

Police have identified Khalid Masood, aged 52, from Kent, as the man they believe carried out the attack. He stabbed to death PC Keith Palmer while trying to enter the Houses of Parliament, and was then shot dead himself by another police officer.

This was just moments after driving a car into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge, leaving two people dead and dozens injured. American tourist Kurt Cochran, aged 54, and British mum-of-two Aysha Frade, aged 43, have been identified as those who were killed.

Isis has claimed responsibility for the attack, for which eight arrests have been made so far.