Yesterday evening, around 10.30pm and near the Imperial Hotel, Russell Square, a young man who has been named as Zakaria Bulham attacked and injured 6 members of the public using a knife, killing a US citizen. The victim has since been named as Darlene Horton.
CSO became aware early this morning that the perpetrator is of Somali origin. Since becoming aware we have responded to media inquiries and used our contacts including staff at the Metropolitan Police Service to obtain accurate information about the event and the perpetrator.
Our press statement has been the following:
Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims, their families and friends.
This horrific attack involved a young man suffering from severe mental illness. There is no evidence that he was radicalised or motivated by extremist ideology. Rather, the attack was spontaneous and the victims were selected at random.
We must ensure our communities work together to support the police in their work to keep London safe for all residents. To tackle all forms of hate crime, including violence inspired by extremist ideology. Bulham happens to be Somali, Muslim, and of Norwegian nationality, but none of these identities bear out on why this horrific attack occurred. We must not stigmatise or stereotype Somalis, Muslims, or EU/EEA migrants who have come to Britain to make a better life for themselves and their families and in the process to contribute to the success of Britain. We must also avoid conflating this tragedy with the incident that occurred in Leytonstone Tube Station involving Muhaydin Mire in December of 2015. Equally, we must not stigmatise or stereotype people who suffer from mental illness. The vast majority of whom are no danger to the public and lead peaceful lives.
If you have any information or concerns and would like to speak to us please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0207 832 5844.