• Tuesday, October 03, 2023


Independent review launched into Leicester unrest

Scores of people were arrested following last year’s untoward incidents which were fuelled by fake news on social media

Lord Ian Austin (Image credit: parliament.uk)

By: Chandrashekar Bhat

An independent review has been launched into the unrest that occurred in Leicester last year.

Community tensions in September 2022 led to a spate of vandalism, assaults, and attacks on places of worship and other properties in Leicester, in some cases highlighting divisions between different groups across the city and beyond.

Scores of suspects were arrested during the investigation of the untoward incidents which police said were fuelled by fake news on social media.

Lord Ian Austin, a former minister for housing and planning, will lead an independent panel of experts to be appointed later to understand the origins of the unrest.

The team will also explore how similar events can be prevented in the future, both in Leicester and elsewhere and set out proposals for strengthening social cohesion locally.

Communities Secretary Michael Gove, who commissioned the review, said the exercise would build a “thorough understanding of the specific events that took place and what can be learned from them.”

He said he had spoken to both home secretary Suella Braverman and Leicester mayor Sir Peter Soulsby to “underline the importance of protecting all parts of the community in Leicester”.

“We will not tolerate attempts to foster division or violence among people or between religious groups,” Gove said.

Lord Austin said, “Acceptance of each other’s background and beliefs is at the heart of our national identity.”

“Communities living and working together have formed some of the most vibrant societies across the country and cities such as Leicester have proud histories of tolerance and diversity.

“This makes the scenes we witnessed in Leicester last year all the more worrying and it is therefore so important that we listen to people in Leicester to get to the bottom of what happened and why.”

Eastern Eye

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