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The New Arab Staff

London hit-and-run being investigated as Islamophobic hate crime

The Metropolitan Police are investigating the incident in Ilford, east London [Getty]

Date of publication: 11 October, 2020

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Police are investigating a hit-and-run on a Muslim woman in east London as a hate crime, according to Islamophobia watchdog Tell MAMA.
London's Metropolitan Police are investigating a hit-and-run attack on a Muslim woman in Ilford as a hate crime, Islamophobia watchdog Tell MAMA has confirmed.

A tweet containing footage of the 29 September attack that went viral claimed that the driver gave the woman, who was wearing a hijab, a "dirty look" before reversing at speed towards her.

A police statement from 6 October confirmed that police and ambulances were called to the scene and attended to the 28-year-old, who suffered bruising to her knee.

"The van involved in the collision didn't stop at the scene and enquiries to locate the driver are ongoing," the statement said.

The driver has been described as white, blonde-haired, and aged between late twenties and early thirties. He was driving a white Ford Transit van which contained a passenger.

Read also: British Muslim medics face 'shocking Islamophobia' from patients

The Met added that it was investigating the incident by speaking to the woman and examining CCTV, however no arrests have yet been made.

Incidents of Islamophobia in the UK have risen sharply since the 2017 terror attacks in London and Manchester, according to the Muslim News.

In its 2018 report, Tell MAMA identified two significant spikes of anti-Muslim hate crimes in the country. The first occured after "Punish a Muslim Day" letters sent were sent to Muslim homes, institutions, and places of work in March of that year.

A second and more significant uptick occurred in August after then-foreign secretary and current Prime Minister Boris Johnson wrote a newspaper column referring to veiled Muslim women as "letterboxes" and "bank-robbers". In the week following his article, anti-Muslim incidents increased by 375 percent.

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