World

Birmingham's links with terror

Birmingham, where Khalid Masood lived, is home to large South Asian and Muslim communities. Last year, it hosted Europe's largest celebrations for the Eid festival, or the end of the fasting month.

The proportion of Muslims in Birmingham is 21.8 per cent of the population - compared to a national average of 4.5 per cent.

Birmingham hit international headlines last year when a court jailed two men for handing money to Mohamed Abrini, a suspect in both the Paris and Brussels attacks.

In 2008, a man from Birmingham was also convicted for intending to kidnap and kill a British Muslim soldier. There was then a scandal in 2014 over attempts to introduce Islamist teaching into several schools in the city through their governors. But Mr Muhammad Afzal, chairman of the Birmingham Central Mosque, said the attacker's motivations had nothing to do with true Islam.

Mr Afzal said: "There are three million Muslims in the UK, and it is a very tiny, tiny minority that was involved in extremism... a majority of Muslims are peace-loving." - AFP

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