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Jeremy Corbyn sees the best of our city as local people come together to support attacked mosque with a profusion of hearts


When I invited MP Jeremy Corbyn to come and visit Norwich I didn't know we'd be at a public meeting talking about an attack on the local mosque. Something he'd had to deal with in his own constituency, Islington North, 2 years ago.

The response to the attack here in Norwich has made me so proud of our city. As soon as the news got out, local people showed their support for the mosque and its users by 'lovebombing' it - sticking hundreds of hearts on the front door scrawled with messages of support.

Jeremy is a well known peace activist, he's made many visits to the Middle East, the latest only recently, to begin a process to try and make the Middle East a WMD (weapons of mass destruction) free zone.

At the start of his visit to Norwich he met students at UEA and spoke about the role of Foreign Policy and the 2015 election. He explained the damage done by George Bush and Tony Blair in starting the Iraq War, its legacy he believes has led the rise of the extremist group ISIS.

He also remains opposed to Trident as I do, with costs estimated to rise to £100 bn, and like him I have to ask, what does it protect? Another view we share is that different cultures understanding each other is the only way to banish discrimination and fear.

The police have said they are reasonably sure the smashing of the windows at the Ishan Mosque in Norwich was a deliberate act against the local muslim community. Amal Douglas who worships there said, "we were very glad the attack was not worse, it seems to me that we need to get out and speak to people to show who we are, to tell them about ourselves to stop this happening again."

Jeremy Corbyn had seen a much worse attack on a mosque close to his home in North London. He said "when they firebombed the Muswell Hill mosque the local synagogue offered the local Muslim community somewhere to worship, until it could be re-built. In Finsbury Park, the mosque is now used by the whole community as a meeting centre. Living with many communities is the way of the world. This is the way it should be."

And I agree with him that we now live in a multi-faith, multi-cultural society. What makes us strong is uniting together and it's by doing this we will build a far more prosperous future for all of us.

Picture: Ann Nicholls/ Look, See, Click Photography

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