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Woolwich backlash: Two arrested after Grimsby mosque attack

Worshipers had been inside, apparently discussing how to thank neighbours their recent support

Police have arrested two people after petrol bombs were hurled at a Grimsby mosque.

Despite an increased police presence in the area following an attack on the complex three days ago, several missiles were thrown at the Grimsby Islamic Cultural Centre, which is part of a complex including a mosque.

Humberside Police said a fire was started at the centre on Weelsby Road shortly before 10pm yesterday, with no injuries.

Diler Gharib, the mosque's chairman, told the Grimsby Telegraph: “We had just finished our prayers and were discussing how to thank our neighbours for the support they have shown us over the past few days when we heard a bang and saw fire coming under the door.

“I grabbed a fire extinguisher and put it out and then two more petrol bombs hit the fire escape and the bin so I had to put those out too.”

Mr Gharib added that the murder of Drummer Lee Rigby in Woolwich was a criminal act that had nothing to do with the Muslim faith.

He said: “We have all been feeling on edge and now this has happened. It's not just the people at the mosque we are worried about, it's our wives, daughters and children who are out in the community.”

A Humberside Police spokeswoman said: “It is too early to speculate why the fire was started, however anyone with any information who could assist officers as part of the investigation are urged to call the Humberside Police non-emergency number 101.

“The force is currently aware of a number of messages which have been posted on social networking sites by a small minority of individuals.

“These messages appear to be an attempt to incite trouble by posting messages inviting people to assemble and cause trouble at particular locations. Those people should be aware that we are monitoring these sites in Humberside and we will take action against those intent on attempting to incite violence or post messages of a racial nature.”

Eleven 16- and 17-year-olds were arrested after the previous incident, which police say followed a party which spiralled out of control.

Following last night's attack, Great Grimsby MP Austin Mitchell said attacks on Islamic institutions were playing into the hands of terrorists who wanted community conflict, telling BBC Radio Humberside: “It's sheer, simple stupidity.

“I'm appalled and shocked. I didn't expect this in Grimsby

“These idiots, whoever they are, are playing directly into the hand of the terrorists.”