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'You ain't no Muslim bruv' stab witness 'had to voice his feelings'

Published 13/12/2015

Police cordon off Leytonstone Underground Station in east London after the incident
Police cordon off Leytonstone Underground Station in east London after the incident

The man who shouted at a suspected terrorist during a stabbing at a Tube station, coining a phrase that later went viral, has told how he just had to say what he felt at the time.

The bystander was heard in video footage of the incident at Leytonstone underground station in east London last weekend, shouting "You ain't no Muslim bruv" as an attacker wielding a knife stabbed a man.

The phrase ended up trending on Twitter and Prime Minister David Cameron hailed it as having "said it all much better than I could have done".

The man behind it, named only as John, told the Sunday Times he had to voice his feelings when he saw what was happening in the station.

"I saw the guy," he said. "I was like, well you ain't a Muslim ... That's my views, and I had to let him know that, because he looked to be a terrorist. I don't believe in all that."

The 39-year-old security guard from north London, who is not a Muslim, said he is upset by people who make generalisations linking Muslims to extremism.

He said: "People look at Muslims, and look at Isis, and think they're all the same. But obviously they're not."

John said he was happy to hear his 20-year-old son commend him for doing "the right thing".

Muhaydin Mire, 29, is expected to stand trial next year charged with the attempted murder of a 56-year-old man who was attacked from behind in front of several members of the public on the evening of Saturday December 5.

Prosecutors have alleged the attack, during which eyewitnesses said they heard him shout "This is for Syria", was an act of terrorism.

Mire, of Sansom Road, Leytonstone, is accused of punching his victim, who has not been identified, to the ground and repeatedly kicking him before taking hold of the victim's head and cutting a 5in (12cm) wound in his neck. The victim underwent five hours of surgery after the attack.

The defendant also allegedly brandished his knife at other members of the public, aiming it at the throat of at least two of them before being Tasered three times by police.

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