Image Of Woman In Hijab At Westminster Attack Was Circulated By Russian Troll
The image of the woman in the hijab went viral on social media as London and the UK was coming to terms with a terror attack in England's capital. It showed a group of people gathered around a victim of the Westminster attack, while the woman, with her phone in her hand, appeared like she was undeterred by what was going on.
People against Islam tried to use the image to explain how they are indifferent to jihadist attacks when they are against Westerners. However, it appears one of the 'people' who posted the image, along with that sentiment on social media, was an account set up by a Russian troll factory.
The Independent reports that @Southlonestar tweeted the image, along with the caption: "Muslim woman pays no mind to the terror attack, casually walks by a dying man while checking phone #PrayForLondon #Westminster #BanIslam."
Credit: Jamie Lorriman
The man behind the lens, Jamie Lorriman, was horrified that the picture was taken out of context and confirmed that the woman in question was definitely impacted by the attack.
He told the news site: "Her behaviour was completely in line with everyone else on the bridge, but you're not assuming others are callously ignoring the scenario.
"The whole thing takes away from the horror of the situation. Nobody would know how they would react. It's a situation you can't be prepared to be thrown into."
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The hijab wearing woman also spoke out at the vicious trolls who were criticising her for her apparent lack of action on the day. She kept her identity hidden, but released a statement, saying: "I'm shocked and totally dismayed at how a picture of me is being circulated on social media.
Credit: Creative Commons
"To those individuals who have interpreted and commented on what my thoughts were in that horrific and distressful moment, I would like to say not only have I been devastated by witnessing the aftermath of a shocking and numbing terror attack, I've also had to deal with the shock of finding my picture plastered all over social media by those who could not look beyond my attire, who draw conclusions based on hate and xenophobia."
It's reported this @Southlonestar account had more than 16,000 followers and also spread messages of support for Donald Trump in the lead-up to the US Presidential election. Not only that, but it also churned out tonnes of pro-Brexit messages as well before last year's referendum.
That account, along with about 2,700 others, has been named in a document handed to the US House Intelligence Committee in its investigation into claims that Moscow worked to get Trump into power.
Featured Image Credit: Jamie Lorriman
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