East London on alert after gunman opens fire in mosque and is then chased off
By Barfi Culture Team
10th May 2019

Armed police were deployed at a mosque in East London last night after a gunman opened fire before being chased off by worshippers.

Metropolitan Police confirmed there was a "firearm discharge" at the Seven Kings Masjid in Ilford. A large police presence remained in the area overnight.

Police were called at 10:45pm to reports that a man, believed to be in possession of a firearm, had entered the masjid on High Road in Seven Kings.

Worshipper Abdul Ahad wrote on Facebook: "A man with fully covered face entered the masjid during taraweeh prayers. Alhamdulillah no one injured or hurt, but one shot was fired and unfortunately he ran away."

Mufti Suhail, imam for East London Masjid, said in a statement: "The suspect ran from the scene when stopped by brothers standing guard at the mosque. A shot was fired which fortunately did not hit anyone."

"We are yet to establish the motive or all the facts surrounding the incident. The police are investigating the matter. A polite request to all to kindly avoid speculating and circulating unconfirmed information."

The incident apparently took place during c.7th Rakat in Tarawih prayers, according to the Muslim Council of Britain.

The area MP Wes Streeting said last night: "We don’t know anything yet about the motivation of this man, but we do know that fear, intimidation and violence must never win."

London Mayor Sadiq Khan said: "I am relieved that nobody was injured by what police believe was a blank-firing handgun. Nevertheless the incident would have frightened worshippers during Ramadan prayers, particularly in the wake of the attacks on mosques in Christchurch earlier this year."

Police now believe the incident may have stemmed from an earlier incident in the street close to the mosque. It is not being treated as a terrorism-related incident.

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