Leicester mayor announces independent inquiry into urban violence | Leicester

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Violent clashes between groups of primarily Hindu and Muslim young men in Leicester must be the subject of an impartial review, the city’s mayor has said.

Sir Peter Soulsby said the review, due to be completed within weeks, will examine whether extremist groups and outside organizations encouraged the unrest on Saturday and Sunday.

“We need to have an understanding of what happened, why it happened and whether it was motivated by extreme ideologies imported from elsewhere. We need to figure out what we can do to intervene to make sure it doesn’t happen in the future,” Soulsby said.

The weekend riots in Leicester was the culmination of weeks of growing tension between sections of the city’s Hindu and Muslim communities.

A demonstration on Sunday took place in response to an unplanned protest march through the city by Hindu men on Saturday.

It has been widely reported that tensions were heightened after a cricket match between India and Pakistan in late August. The feverish mood was exacerbated by videos circulating online at the weekend showing a man pulling down a flag outside a Hindu temple in Melton Road, Leicester, and another video of a flag being burnt.

Nationalist Hindu organizations and Islamist organizations have been accused of creating tension online. Others have claimed that nationalist Hindu followers have been among gangs roaming the city, a claim that has been rejected by some youths.

A total of 47 people have been arrested, including 20 over the weekend. Some have been convicted of weapons possession.

The clashes came as a shock to many residents of Leicester, which has built up a reputation as a harmonious city after decades of waves of immigration.

The review is expected to examine whether much of the trouble involved outsiders. Eight of the 18 people arrested on Sunday were not from Leicestershire. This was revealed by The Guardian that five came from Birmingham, while one came from Solihull, one from Luton and one gave an address in Hounslow.

The idea of ​​an interagency review was raised Wednesday night at a meeting between community members, police and council, Soulsby said.

“We will look to our local universities to get someone to do the review, but the actual format and terms of reference have not yet been finalized,” he said.

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