Amid the chaos and agitation surging through a crowd early Monday after a van plowed into pedestrians outside London's Finsbury Park Mosque, one person stepped in to protect the attacker, witnesses say: the mosque's imam.
"Communities will see additional officers patrolling across the city and at Muslim places of worship".
Toufik Kacimi, the mosque's chief executive, said the imam "helped calm the immediate situation after the incident and prevented further injuries and potential loss of life", according to the Guardian.
A 48-year-old white man drove a hired van into a group of Muslim worshippers early Monday morning, killing one and injuring 10 others, some seriously.
Later on Monday police insisted that, internally at least, the Finsbury Park incident was treated as a terror attack at 12:29 a.m., a few minutes after officers arrived on the scene.
London Mayor Sadiq Khan, the first Muslim to serve in that position, urged residents to focus on their shared values and to stand together during this an unprecedented period in the capital's history.
"The driver of the van, said 'I did my bit, ' which means he's not mentally ill", Kacimi said. "When he was running, he said 'I want to kill more people, I want to kill more Muslims, '" he said.More news: Newt Gingrich Now Says the President "Technically" Can't Even Obstruct Justice
"There has been an outpouring of sympathy for all the recent terror attacks but hardly a whisper on this attack", he said. Parents are scared to send their children to evening prayers.
Hobbs told Sam Delaney: "Amber Rudd rubbishing community policing, as she's done, is a nonsense because now we need them more than ever and they're just not there". The prime minister, who has been criticized for failing to show compassion to victims, travelled to the attack site within hours, and met with community and faith leaders.
"Hatred and evil of this kind will never succeed", she said in a televised statement. "These are the values that define this country". However, the mosque was shut down and reorganized and has not been associated with radical views for more than a decade.
It is located a short walk away from Emirates Stadium, home of the Arsenal football club in north London.
Britain's terror alert level is at "severe", meaning security officials believe an attack is highly likely, and a series of extremist attacks have struck across the country in the last few months. Eight people were killed and dozens were wounded before police fatally shot the three attackers.
Armed police guard a street in the Finsbury Park area of north London where a vehicle hit pedestrians on 19 June 2017.
Communities Secretary Sajid Javid also visited the scene, and, outside the police cordon, comforted a woman who was visibly shaking.