Birmingham mosque fireball suspect also arrested for similar London attack

A man has been arrested on suspicion of two counts of attempted murder after detectives linked incidents where men were set alight in Birmingham and London near mosques.

Mohammed Rayaz, 70, was set on fire on his way back from Dudley Road Mosque in the Edgbaston area of Birmingham at about 7pm on Monday.

He was doused in liquid believed to be petrol and was set on fire using a lighter.

The victim was taken to hospital where he received treatment for severe burns to his face and arms.

He remains in a stable condition in intensive care and is undergoing skin grafts.

The previous incident involved a man, 70, being attacked after he left West London Islamic Centre in Ealing on Monday 27 February at around 8.00pm.

CCTV footage of the attack in Edgbaston shows a fire ball after the man is doused in a liquid and set on fire. Credit: DOAM/BPM Media

Detectives from the Met’s west area command are working closely with West Midlands Police, which is leading the investigation, to establish the full circumstances.

Chief Superintendent Sean Wilson, of the Met’s west area command, said: "We completely understand the shock that resonated throughout the community following this incident.

"Despite a man having been arrested, we continue to be vigilant and urge local people to do the same.

"Highly visible patrols around Singapore Road will continue in the coming days to provide reassurance to local people and I urge anyone who is concerned to approach officers."

Counter-terror police are supporting the investigations.

Officers are keeping an open mind as to any potential motive at this stage.

In a statement, West Midlands Police said: "At this stage we cannot speculate around the motive for the attacks, this is a live investigation and our main aim is to make sure communities are safe and that we bring justice for the victims."