AN arsonist attacked a mosque in Oldham in Greater Manchester just three hours after the Ariana Grande concert bombing on Monday night.
A hooded man was caught on security video at about 2.55am on Tuesday pouring liquid onto the door of the Jamia Qasmia Zahidia Islamic Centre in Oldham and setting it alight.
The door was badly damaged but no-one was injured. Police are examining the video footage.
A spokesman for anti-racist campaign group Hope Not Hate said: “Too often we see the ugly face of hatred jump on the back of a terrorist atrocity.
“This is exactly what the terrorists want — to drive a wedge between Muslims and the rest of us, to convince each side that there is nowhere else to go. Down that road, ultimately, lies civil war.
“What good does it do to target a house of worship, when we know that young men are often radicalised through other means and frequently challenged or excluded by mainstream worshippers?
“We mustn’t do the extremists’ job for them. Let’s ask the difficult questions, let’s examine and keep on examining how we can best defeat the cancer of violent extremism, but let’s not help the terrorists either.”
On Tuesday the racist English Defence League tried to exploit the tragedy in Manchester.
But they were opposed and outnumbered by Mancunians who told them their racist hatred was not wanted in the city.