Finsbury Park attack: Man who died of 'multiple injuries' outside mosque named as grandfather Makram Ali

Relatives say 51-year-old collapsed because of a weak leg before being hit by van

Lizzie Dearden
Thursday 22 June 2017 13:37 BST
Makram Ali was described by relatives as a gentle man who enjoyed spending time with his children and grandchildren
Makram Ali was described by relatives as a gentle man who enjoyed spending time with his children and grandchildren (Metropolitan Police)

The victim who died of “multiple injuries” in the Finsbury Park terror attack has been remembered as a "quiet and loving" man.

Police said Makram Ali was receiving first aid as the attack unfolded but did not confirm witness reports of a possible heart attack.

A spokesperson for Scotland Yard said a preliminary postmortem showed the 51-year-old grandfather died of multiple injuries and that a coroner’s inquest would formally establish the cause of death. “Mr Ali was receiving first aid at the scene as the attack unfolded and was pronounced dead at the scene at 01.04am,” he said.

The force previously said an investigation was underway to establish whether Mr Ali’s death was linked to the atrocity, which injured 11 other people.

In a statement, Mr Ali’s family said he had suffered “some form of collapse” because of a weak leg “before recovering, sitting up and expressing a wish to return home only to then become a victim of this horrific incident”.

Relatives said the grandfather had just completed his evening prayers, which gave him “great comfort in the feelings of peace”, adding: “At present we are getting a clearer picture of what exactly happened to our father and we are getting regular updates from the police who have been extremely helpful so far.

London residents bring flowers in solidarity with Finsbury Park Mosque after attack

“We wish to thank them and the emergency services for their work and we’d especially like to thank those people who helped our father in his last moments and also thank all the people who have left messages of condolence and flowers at the mosque.”

After coming to the UK from Bangladesh at the age of 10, Mr Ali married and had four daughters and two sons, later becoming a grandfather-of-two. He regularly attended the local mosque and enjoyed visiting the local park with his grandchildren.

Mr Ali’s relatives, who met Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick and senior investigators on Thursday, said he had been due to fly to Canada for a family holiday. They described him as a peace-loving and gentle person who had no enemies, adding that they were “devastated” by their loss.

“Our father was a quiet gentle man, he didn’t get involved in political or social discussion, he instead took comfort and enjoyment spending time with his wife, children and grandchildren and he was always ready to make a funny joke when you least expected,” a statement by Mr Ali’s relatives said.

“We wish everyone to know what a loving man he was, he spent his whole life without any enemies, choosing a quiet life instead.

“We as a family have always believed that the actions of one person cannot be a reflection of a whole people and I have no doubt that our father would not wish for there to be any retaliation or recriminations and would urge people to remain calm and to pray for peace in these difficult times.”

Counter-terror detectives are continuing to appeal for witnesses to the attack shortly after midnight on Monday, which appeared to target Muslims leaving night prayers.

The van struck near the Muslim Welfare House, whose imam Mohammed Mahmoud stepped in with other worshippers to protect the suspected van driver from an angry crowd of witnesses. They flagged down a passing police van as the suspect was restrained on the ground, allowing officers to take him into custody.

Detectives have released a photo of the van used in the attack, registration number PO54 CSF, while calling on anyone who spoke to the driver in the day leading up to the attack to call on 0800 789 321.

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu said the van had set off from Cardiff at around 8.20am on Sunday, adding: “We are very grateful to everyone who has provided information so far – their accounts are assisting the investigation hugely – but we need more people to come forward and tell us what they saw and what they know about the driver of this van.”

The van used in the Finsbury Park terror attack (Metropolitan Police)

He said counter-terror officers have spoken to 28 witnesses who were at the scene of the attack so far, trawled through around 80 hours of CCTV, visited 140 locations and recovered 33 digital devices from properties in Wales.

A 47-year-old man identified as Darren Osborne, from Cardiff, has been arrested in connection with the incident and remains in custody on suspicion of the commission of terrorism, attempted murder and murder.

Four injured victims remain in hospital, including two who are in critical care.

Meanwhile, the Metropolitan Police is reviewing security across London with a focus on places of worship including mosques and Muslim community centres, where uniformed officers have been deployed to boost security.

Anyone with information that may assist the investigation is urged to either call police in confidence on 0800 789 321 or contact police online via a secure form at

Anyone with images or footage relating to the incident is urged to upload them via the secure website here.

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