Finsbury Park van attack: why an imam saved a terror suspect

Source: The Guardian

BY Burhan Wazir

Mohammed Masoud, imam at the Muslim Welfare House
 ‘Muslims are portrayed in an unfavourable light in the media’ … Mohammed Mahmoud at his mosque. Photograph: David Levene for the Guardian

On a humid evening in June, Mohammed Mahmoud, the 31-year-old imam of the Muslim Welfare House in Finsbury Park, north London, finished tarawih, the evening prayer performed during Ramadan. It was nearly midnight when he returned to his first-floor office. “I hadn’t made the tea yet when one of the congregation came up and told me there had been an attack.” Mahmoud hurried downstairs and on to Seven Sisters Road, where he thought there had been a stabbing. A hundred yards outside the entrance, he saw a white van had mounted the pavement. “There were bodies scattered around and two people were stuck under the van.”

Darren Osborne, a 47-year-old father of four, is alleged to have hired the vehicle in Cardiff and driven it to London. In the tragedy that unfolded, one person died and 10 were injured. Osborne is yet to stand trial.

The 51-year-old victim, a grandfather named Makram Ali, died of multiple injuries after being struck by the vehicle when it ploughed into the crowd. “One of the congregation then said to me: ‘He’s dead.’”

Osborne had been pulled out of the van and was being restrained by three worshippers. As news of the incident spread, dozens of people crowded the scene to investigate the commotion. Mahmoud knew tensions were quickly rising and people were getting angry.

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7 replies

  1. He’s exactly right, he did what any Muslim would have done.? A true Muslim leaves the judgement to the law and Allah which is why Osborne remain unharmed at the scene although he killed several people in his terror attempt of this very hateful crime.

  2. What a heroic act by a Muslim. This man deserves much credit. Not everyone would be able to show this much bravery, and that is why because of his act he was able to save lives.

    • Yes, and what about those who arm the extremists? It is clear and well documented that the CIA created and armed Al Qaeeda at first and ISIS later. Why do you only speak up against the extremist Muslims (yes, correctly!) and leave out those that created them? (USA)

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