Jewish community patrol group pledges to protect Stoke Newington mosque
PUBLISHED: 14:38 24 June 2013 | UPDATED: 17:59 24 June 2013
A Jewish community patrol group has pledged to protect a mosque after a rise in Islamophobic hate crime in London following the Woolwich attack.
In a display of community togetherness, the Shomrim patrol group – which means safety and security in Hebrew – accepted a request for protection by the North London Community Centre (NLCC) in Cazenove Road, Stoke Newington.
The deal was brokered at a meeting coordinated by Hackney Liberal Democrat Cllr Ian Sharer.
He said: “I was asked by Muslim friends to chair the meeting. The meeting was a great success. The Shomrim patrols have agreed to include the local mosques and other buildings as part of their routine patrols.
“Both Shomrim and the NLCC are great organisations and it’s nice to bring them together.”
The Stamford Hill Shomrim group has 22 people and was set up in 2008 in part as a reaction to anti-Semitic incidents.
Members of the 24-hour patrol group have been trained by Hackney police, and have neighbourhood patrol badges and uniforms.
Chaim Hochhauser, 33, one of two Shomrim supervisors, who lives near Stamford Hill junction, Stamford Hill, said: “The Muslim community approached Cllr Sharer and asked him what they could do to protect themselves.
“He called us and asked us if we could help. We told them what we could do. We are pleased the Jewish community wanted to help.
“Both communities get on really well here. It’s a shame it’s not like this all over the world. We help out all the whole community, not just the Jewish community.”
Eusoof Ameerat, 66, of Fountayne Road, and a member of the Hackney Police Independent Advisory Group, said: “It’s a great offer. We don’t just want to receive, we want to work together as a team rather than just taking their support and try to support each other as a community.
“I would say it’s the sort of thing we should all be doing.”
Following the killing of Drummer Lee Rigby in Woolwich last month, there was an arson attack on a Somali community centre in Muswell Hill and Finsbury Park Mosque in St Thomas’s Road has reported a rise in hate crime incidents.