Tributes flood in after killing of MP David Amess
Tributes have poured in for Conservative MP Sir David Amess, who has been described as an "upstanding friend" to the Muslim community.
Sir David was stabbed multiple times at his constituency surgery in Leigh-on-Sea in Essex on Friday.
A 25-year-old man was arrested at the scene on suspicion of murder. Police said they are treating it as a terrorist incident.
Mohamed Ali Harrath, Founder of Islam Channel, spoke of his shock at the murder of Sir David Amess. He said: “Sir David Amess will be sorely missed, as a good friend of the Muslim community. He was a firm believer in equality and dialogue between faiths and supporter of many Muslim initiatives.”
Mosques in his local constituency have paid tribute to Amess, underlying how much the MP was respected and valued by the local Muslim community.
"As members of Southend-On-Sea’s Muslim community, we mourn the brutal and senseless killing of Sir David Amess MP." read the joint statement from all Southend Mosques.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with Sir David’s family, friends and colleagues at this difficult time. We share their grief at his loss, for Sir David was not only our Member of Parliament, but an upstanding friend to our Muslim community."
The statement spoke about Amess's support of the local community, highlighting his presence at Muslim events, such as attending the first Muslim scout group in Southend, and the opening of masjids.
"Sir David’s murder was an indefensible atrocity, committed on the grounds of a place of worship and we condemn it in the strongest possible terms. This act was committed in the name of blind hatred, and we look forward to the perpetrator being brought to justice," added the statement.
The Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) posted a long Twitter thread, highlighting Amess's many engagements with the Muslim community
MCB Secretary-General Zara Mohammed said: “Sir David’s murder is deeply upsetting and our thoughts and prayers are with all those grieving his loss at this time."
"That he was murdered in the course of performing his duties as a Parliamentarian, highlights the danger politicians in the public eye face.
The vitality of democracy rests on the accessibility of our elected representatives. They must be allowed to serve their constituents without threats to their safety.”
Amess was chairman of the Qatar All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) and met with the Emir of the country a few days ago in a recent delegation to the Middle East
"We are deeply saddened by the tragic loss of Sir David Amess MP and chairman of Qatar APPG," tweeted the Amir of the state of Qatar, Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani.
"We remember with great appreciation his efforts to advance the historic relations between our two nations. Our sincerest condolences to his family, friends and the British people."
The Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Labour party leader Sir Keir Starmer visited Leigh-on-Sea on Saturday and laid flowers together at the scene.
Prominent Muslim politicians and organisations have also expressed their grief, loss and devastation on hearing the tragic news.
Amess is the second MP to have been killed in the last five years in the UK. Labour MP Jo Cox was shot and killed in June 2016 by a far-right extremist.