Muslim residents in a city in northwestern England have received letters containing threats of acid attacks, amid the rising rate of hate crimes in the United Kingdom, particularly after terrorist attacks in London and Manchester.
West Yorkshire police said on Tuesday that they were taking the threats in Bradford “extremely seriously” and had increased surveillance in the predominantly-Muslim city.
Reports emerged that one of the letters questioned the reason behind Islamic women wearing Burqas, the full-body veils.
“The incident is being treated as a hate crime and being taken extremely seriously,” a police spokesperson said. “A thorough investigation has been launched and officers are working with the local community and partners to identify and prosecute those responsible for this despicable crime.”
“We understand the impact hate crime and hate incidents can have on our communities and on individuals, and crimes of this nature will not be tolerated,” the spokesman noted.
The British counter-terrorism police have also been conducting an investigation into a separate campaign of hate mail and suspicious packages sent to mosques in the United Kingdom and the United States. The letters contained offensive material and threats, saying the sender would be visiting the mosques.
Islamophobic hate crimes have sharply increased across Britain since the terror attacks in London and Manchester.
Back in June, an assailant ran over pedestrians and went on a stabbing spree at a nearby restaurant in London Bridge, killing 7 people and injuring 48 more.
A month earlier, at least 22 people lost their lives and around 120 more sustained injuries when 22-year-old Salman Abedi allegedly detonated his explosives at a concert hall in Manchester.
Police figures show that Islamophobic hate crimes in Manchester have soared by more than 500 percent since the terrorist attacks.