LONDON - Police in Scotland are investigating an Islamophobic hate crime after racist and anti-Muslim comments were found spray-painted on the walls of a mosque Monday night.
The crime took place at the Elgin Islamic Centre in north Scotland around 11:00 p.m. A swastika symbol was sprayed on the walls as well as other racist and vulgar comments. Scottish police have described the incident as “completely unacceptable”.
“Well, of course we’re worried. I mean, if we don’t say that, then we must be fools,” Lansana Bangura, chairman of the mosque, told the BBC.
“We are worried. But at the same time, you know, you expect things like that to happen.”
“But I hope it will not happen very often.”
Bangura said reassuringly that such acts do not break the bonds that Scottish Muslims have built with their neighbors and that they have received support and backing from the non-Muslim community.
According to police, a white male between 30 and 40 years old with short brown hair was seen in the area at the time and they are searching for him as part of an investigation and have appealed to the public for information.
“Crimes of this nature are completely unacceptable. There is absolutely no place for it in our communities, and a number of inquiries are ongoing to establish who is responsible,” said Detective Inspector Martin MacDougall.
The inspector also reassured the Muslim community that they are in regular contact with the mosque and that police patrols in and around the area will be increased while the investigation proceeds.