Police Patrol UK Mosques Vowing To 'Stand Together' With Muslims
Police are reported to be patrolling UK mosques following the terror attack in Christchurch, New Zealand, in which a gunman targeted Muslims.
The head of British counter terror police said that UK officers will 'stand together' with Muslim communities in Christchurch, ensuring that security is heightened across the country.
Metropolitan Police assistant commissioner Neil Basu said: "Today we will be stepping up reassurance patrols around mosques and increasing engagement with communities of all faith, giving advice on how people and places can protect themselves.
"We are standing together with our Muslim communities and all those shocked and horrified by this terrorist attack in New Zealand."
Police around the Birmingham area have said they will be increasing their presence around 'key religious buildings'. West Midlands assistant chief constable Matt Ward has released a statement on Twitter, saying there is no increased threat, but that the force will be working to ensure local communities are protected.
A message from Assistant Chief Constable Matt Ward 'Our thoughts are with those effected by the New Zealand terror attack' @nzpolice pic.twitter.com/KEXDxZ7MNU
- West Midlands Police (@WMPolice) March 15, 2019
So far, it has been confirmed that 49 people have lost their lives in the attack, which took place at two mosques in Christchurch during Friday prayers. A further 20 are confirmed injured.
Three men and one woman have been arrested in connection to the attack. The gunman is said to be an Australian citizen, and has been described as an 'extremist, right-wing, violent terrorist' by Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Arden has said the attack will go down in history as one of the country's darkest days.
Ardern added: "This is not who we are. This act was not a reflection of who we are as a nation. It will take time to heal and tonight our thoughts and our prayers need to be with those affected."
New Zealand Police Commissioner Mike Bush said there could be more suspects involved in this attack.
"We are currently dealing with an unprecedented situation in New Zealand. It's very grave, it's very serious," he told reporters.
"This is absolutely tragic. There will be so many people affected. As you can imagine, this is requiring every police and emergency resource we have available."
YouTuber PewDiePie has also responded to reports that the gunman mentioned him in a video - thought to be a live-stream, where he told people to 'subscribe' to PewDiePie, before entering the mosque and opening fire.
Featured Image Credit: PA