Belfast Telegraph

Allah insult painted on house in sick hate crime in Belfast

By Michelle Smyth

A Belfast Muslim has spoken of his distress after his home was daubed with sick Islamophobic graffiti over the weekend.

Adil Sadar spent Saturday afternoon painting over the insult to his God, Allah, after vandals struck at the front of his west Belfast home on Friday night.

Mr Sadar is a practising Muslim and shares his Donegore Gardens home with his brother Asim.

He said the two were left badly shaken by the attack, but added they know it's not indicative of the whole community.

Adil said he and his brother keep to themselves and he believed the attackers were reacting to recent terrorist attacks around the world which have included the Charlie Hebdo attacks in Paris.

Businessman Asim said his car windows had been smashed in the past.

"It should not be happening, it is very unpleasant," he said. "I don't know who is responsible but there are often groups of young people hanging around drinking and doing drugs. I hope the police find out who did this.

"I will stay here for now but if things like this continue to happen and if I feel uncomfortable then I will think about moving."

Ulster Unionist councillor for the area Bill Manwarring said he suspected the attack was a result of recent events in Paris and further afield.

"This sort of incident is shocking. Intolerance like this leads to violence and aggression. There is no justification for such hatred. It frustrates me that bigots like this can create such a fear-factor in communities," he said.

Sinn Fein's Matt Garrett said the attack was "despicable and cowardly", adding that those responsible should "hang their heads in shame".

"These people need to face the full weight of the law to send out a clear message that hate crime is unacceptable in our society," he said.

Meanwhile, on the Crumlin Road, two houses were targeted in sectarian hate crime attacks.

On Friday night at around 11pm a brick was thrown through the window of a house. Shortly after, paint was thrown at a house nearby, causing extensive damage. A car was heard speeding off after both incidents.

Sinn Fein councillor Gerard McCabe said those responsible "need to wise up". "These people are fed up and just want to get on with their lives," he added.

Detectives are appealing to anyone who has information on any of the attacks to contact them on 101 or Crimestoppers.

Background

Ulster Unionist councillor Bill Manwaring said he feared the anti-Islam attack in west Belfast was a consequence of recent terror attacks around the world, including the murders of 12 people at offices of the satirical Charlie Hebdo magazine in Paris. The shooting by Islamist gunmen marked the beginning of three days of terror in the French capital which left 17 innocent people and three gunmen dead.

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