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Terror: ‘Horrific scenes’ as van is driven into crowd of worshippers

Family pay tribute to man killed after vehicle mounted the pavement – 10 others are injured

23 June, 2017 — By Emily Finch, Koos Couvée

Police officers block off Seven Sisters Road, close to the scene of Monday’s attack in Whadcoat Street

FINSBURY Park’s Muslim community was rocked by terror this week after a man drove a van into a crowd of worshippers, killing one and injuring 10 others.

The vehicle mounted the pavement and struck a group of people in Whadcoat Street, off Seven Sisters Road, in the early hours of Monday.

Grandfather Makram Ali, who lived nearby, died at the scene. A post-mortem examination concluded that the 51-year-old died of multiple injuries. Mr Ali, who had come to the UK from Bangladesh aged 10, regularly attended the nearby Muslim Welfare House mosque. He had become unwell after attending prayers there and was being cared for by bystanders when the van struck.

The 47-year-old van driver (left) who is in custody. Right: Makram Ali was killed in the terror attack

His family said: “We are devastated by the loss of a husband, father, brother and grandfather. Our father was a quiet, gentle man, he didn’t get involved in political or social discussion, he instead took comfort and enjoyment spending time with his wife, children and grandchildren and he was always ready to make a funny joke when you least expected.”

Many of the victims had just left evening prayers at the Muslim Welfare House after breaking the Ramadan fast. Four remained in hospital last night (Thursday), two receiving critical care.

One witness, who gave his name as Athmane, aged 31, said: “I saw an attack, a crazy suspect who crashed [into] everyone with his van. I heard people shouting and screaming. It was just like a disaster.”

Abdul Abdullahi, 18, from Finsbury Park, said: “I saw very horrific scenes. There was a guy bleeding from the head who was vomiting, there was an old lady holding another guy. ”

Holloway ward councillor Rakhia Ismail, whose husband Yassin Hersi suffered a broken ankle in the attack, said: “It’s a shock for us as a family, but as a community we will be stronger together.”

The driver of the van – a 47-year-old man from Wales – was detained by members of the public at the scene and was arrested by police on suspicion ­terrorism offences, attempted murder and murder. He remains in custody at a south London police station.

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