Police are investigating a sick anti-Muslim website set up on Facebook to stir up tensions over fake claims a ‘super-mosque’ was being built in Wrexham.
The site “No to the super mosque in Wrexham” on the social network site wrongly claims permission has been given for a mosque at the Miners Institute in North Wales’s largest town. And the website, which bears the Welsh Defence League logo, is also filled with hateful messages against Muslims, which North Wales Police are now investigating.
The web group has more than 2,800 members and this follows a march by the Welsh Defence League designed to stir up tensions in the town. A counter group “Yes to the Super Mosque in Wrexham” has also been set up on Facebook.
The Wrexham Muslim Association (WMA) has denied there are any plans to convert the town’s Miners Institute building into a mosque but said there were plans to lease a small building in the town for worship. A spokesman for the WMA said: “There is nothing in this rumour we are setting up a mosque at the Miners Institute. We simply do not have enough money to do anything like that. But we are hopeful of leasing a place from the council next to St James’ Church in Wrexham.”
Commenting on the anti-Muslim remarks on the webpage on Facebook the spokesman added: “They are upsetting and annoying and I don’t want to pay any attention to such remarks.”
Ian Tetherington, secretary for anti-fascist group Searchlight Cymru, said: “A mosque is not something to be scared of, it would be something to be proud of. Wrexham has a history of tolerance and should be proud of that. These people are Welsh, they just happen to be Muslims, instead of Christians or Hindus, but they are still Welsh and just want somewhere to worship like other faiths.
“I don’t see why anyone would have a problem with them worshipping in a safe, dry place. The idea this is a ‘super-mosque’ is a complete fabrication made up to stir things up and create tension. There are a few hundred Muslims in Wrexham so why would they want a huge place of worship, this is simply not the case. Like other faiths in the town they just want somewhere to meet rather than the temporary building where they are currently having to meet. I live close to a mosque myself in Cardiff and do not understand why people would have an issue with it.”
A North Wales Police spokesman said: “We are aware of the site and are investigating. We are also liaising with members of the local community.”