The imam of a Galway mosque which was attacked during the hour of prayer on Monday evening has appealed for “calm” in the wake of the London terrorist attack.
Imam Ibrahim Ahmad Noonan of the Masjid Maryam mosque in Galway told The Irish Times that up to 100 members of the Galway mosque were left “terrified” when rocks smashed through the windows during the attack on Monday evening.
The attack comes in the wake of the terror attack in London on Saturday night and news that one of the three attackers lived for a time in Ireland and got married here. A cross-border inquiry is seeking to establish if Rachid Redouane (30), who lived in Rathmines for a time, got married in Ireland for immigration reasons. Police said Redouane claimed to be Moroccan or Libyan.
An investigation in recent years found some men who had been refused immigration status or whose marriage plans had been questioned in Britain sought to marry in Ireland as a “back door” to staying in the European Union. It is understood he married in 2011 or 2012 before leaving for London and that he made an unsuccessful application for asylum in the UK in 2009.
Imam Noonan said the the attack in Galway took place at approximately 11.20 pm on Monday evening. “Last night, during the time of prayer and actually as we prayed, rocks smashed through the windows”, the Imam said.
Imam Ibrahim Ahmad Noonan Tweeted pictures of broken windows at the Galway mosque. Photograph: Imam Ibrahim Ahmad Noonan/Twitter
“I was leading the prayers when we heard an extremely loud bang and obviously we were in the middle of the prayers so continued on but there were one or two people who left the prayers to see what the bang was,” Mr Ahmad Noonan told The Irish Times.