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Illegal Ramadan stall owners attack British police again, challenging UK’s law and order machinery

Police attacked during Birmingham Ramadan stalls crackdown

The Birmingham police was attacked by stall owners of the illegal street market on Sunday as a large crowd chased the police during Ramadan.

The police was following up on complaints by local residents who had said that Ramadan – the holiest month in the Islamic calendar – had turned their neighbourhood, Coventry Road, into “30 days of hell”.

The Birmingham Mail reports that officials from various departments like the police and licensing, among other teams, led a joint operation to address problems caused by illegal street vendors during Ramadan. However, the teams were chased and a police official was reportedly kicked by someone in the crowd.


The police had to leave the spot within an hour and a half as they were circled by a mob of street vendors. The crowd reportedly shouted, “get out of here”, “we don’t want you” and started making pig-like noises around the enforcement officials.

The crowd kicked police cars as they drove away from a hostile crowd.

The Birmingham Mail quoted Sergeant James Newton, Supervisor for Small Heath and Highgate, as saying: “The purpose is to enforce legislation around illegal pop-up trading tents, nuisance, anti-social behaviour and general increase. We have seen a marked increase of dissatisfaction from the local community about illegal trading, which creates heavy foot flow in the area and has a direct impact on the local community”.

The BBC too reported that bottles were thrown at the police in Small Heath, Birmingham, “during an operation to crack down on illegal street market stalls during Ramadan”. It said that one officer suffered minor injuries in the melee.

People have complained about chaos, congestion and loud noise during the  one month of festivities.

In recent memory, this is the second time that the British police has been attacked by communal crowds.

Last year during unrest reported from the town of Leicester in September-October, the police had reported that an unusually high number of their personnel had come under attack. The attacks on the police and the Leicester violence against Hindus by local and outside Muslims was considered serious enough by Home Secretary, Suella Braverman to visit the violence-affected city.

Under attacks, the Leicester police called reinforcements from other districts, even as far as London where the police had been busy making arrangements for the Queen’s funeral.

Investigations in Leicester by a couple of US and British independent organisations found that local Islamic groups had gaslighted the British media and claimed that the Hindus had attacked them. However, lengthy investigations by the police and video footage unearthed lies spread by local Muslim groups about the violence.

Also read: Leicester Muslims cry Islamophobia after police investigation of riots gathers pace