By Elham Asaad Buaras
A mosque being built in Redditch has been broken into and graffiti including swastikas sprayed on to the walls and windows.
Redditch Central Mosque in Jinnah Road was sprayed in the early hours of on June 26 with the initials EDL, NF, KKK and racist language in six windows.
The intruders forced their way through a gate and broke into the main building.
Police spokesperson said “thousands of pounds” worth of equipment was taken.
Two drills and two electronic generators were stolen along with a transformer, petrol mixer and other electrical items.
Police have renewed an appeal for witnesses and information from anyone who may have seen any suspicious activity or sightings of vans or larger vehicles there between 2 and4.30 am.
Supt Kevin Purcell of West Mercia Police, told The Muslim News, “For as long as I can remember, the relationship between the Muslim community in Redditch, the police and the wider community would best be described as excellent.
“Due to incidents happening nationally, targeted patrols have been put in place and these will now be further increased as we will not tolerate mindless attacks of this nature.”
The £2.5m mosque has previously been hit by vandalism. At the time of those attacks two years ago, they were not thought to be racially motivated.
The new building will have room for about 1,300 worshippers. It will replace the current mosque in Easemore Road.
Mosque leaders said they were “shocked” at the attack.
Treasurer Mobeen Al-Hussain said they believed the intruders had broken in to steal some drainage equipment being used by the construction workers and had painted the graffiti after finding the spray cans. “It is sad but as a project it’s not going to hinder our next phase,” he said.
The Islamophobic graffiti is not the first time the mosque has been targeted. An arson attack caused £3,000 of damage in July 2006.
Arsonists were also blamed for another fire, which was set at the front door of the mosque last January.
No one was injured and there was no major damage to the building in the 2012 attack but police treated both incidents as arson.