Communities Secretary Eric Pickles made this statement following the actions of the far-right Britain First group who have entered a number of mosques over the last few months:
Everyone has the right to feel safe in the place where they worship, free from discrimination and prejudice and we utterly condemn the recent events in Bradford and the fear and intimidation this has created among residents.
These were the deliberate and provocative actions of thugs and they have no place in our society.
Her Majesty’s Government would like to thank Bradford’s Muslim citizens for their commendable reaction which was a true example of Britishness. In our country people of all religions must be able to worship without fear of harassment or interruption.
That freedom of worship is a fundamental and hard-fought British liberty that should be defended and we will continue to work with faith organisations and the Council of Mosques to take the right security precautions and ensure that people in Bradford feel safe.