Violent clashes between Hindu and Muslim men in Leicester sparks independent review

  • An independent review has been launched after violent unrest in Leicester between Hindu and Muslim men

An independent review is being carried out in Leicester after a number of violent clashes between young Hindu and Muslim men last month.

The review has been commissioned by Leicester City Council who is hoping to determine what has caused the unrest.

Researchers will talk to hundreds of people including members of the public, the police, MPs and local councillors.

The independent inquiry will take place over four months and the results being published by March next year.

It is being carried out by the University of Leicester and lead by Dr Chris Allen. They say they are not trying "to apportion blame" but are determined to find out "what actually happened"

  • Dr Chris Allen leading the inquiry outlines the aims of the review

Dr Allen said: "This isn't necessarily something that is entirely exclusive to Leicester.

"We'll be looking into actually what happened with those [groups], what were the catalysts and why did they happen when they did?"

"We'll be looking at what happened before, during and after the disturbances. Did we miss any of the warning signs? Did we see anything before that we didn't act on properly."

Dr Allen continued: "This is an extremely contentious and potentially controversial topic that we're beginning to investigate within this review.

"We don't come at this from the particular perspective of any kind of ideology, whether that be political, or be religious ideology."

He added: "[We are] far from trying to apportion blame, the learning gathered will instead provide a meaningful starting point, from which we can all work towards rebuilding the good relations that have been a defining feature of Leicester for the past few decades."

Police were outnumbered at the unrest in Belgrave Credit: Leicester Media Online

One incident in September saw police in Belgrave being outnumbered by the two opposing groups with bottles being thrown at them.

Sir Peter Soulsby, the Mayor of Leicester, said: "I think what happened, undoubtedly has implications beyond the particular events of the day, and understanding that is the key to us knowing what might be done to prevent it reoccurring.

"I very much hope that in terms of what happens on the streets of Leicester it's a one off and certainly the police have been doing their very best to ensure that that is the case."

Violence broke out between members of the Hindu and Muslim communities between 18 and 21 September.

Leicester City Council said: “There are many theories circulating as to what led to the recent disorder – the like of which has never been seen here before."

"It’s important that we get to the facts as quickly and efficiently as possible so that we can all take whatever action is necessary to ensure we never see it again.”