Mourners were leaving the Pakistan Social Cultural And Islamic Centre in Parkinson Avenue at about 8.30pm on Tuesday, when a group approached them and are alleged to have shouted abuse and made threats. After being asked to leave the scene, they are then said to have forced their way into the building, where about 25 mourners, some of who had travelled long distances to attend the funeral, remained.
Abid Khan, member of the South Humber Racial Equality Council (SHREC) board, was at the funeral, but left before the disturbance. He said: “A lot of people there were from out of the area and started to panic. One minute you are mourning the loss of a loved one and the next, something like this happens.”
Humberside Police officers were called to the scene and ensured the safety of all those inside the mosque. Police also spoke to two youths, and subsequently went to an address in Porter Street.
Officers arrested five men at the address in connection with the incident at about 9.15pm and, at the time of going to press, a 30-year-old, two 25-year-olds, a 24-year-old and a 21-year-old remained in custody at Scunthorpe Police Station.
Afzal Khan, who was inside the mosque at the time of the incident, said he was still in shock at what had happened. He said: “This is a place of worship that people attend on a daily basis and nobody should fear for their safety. I cannot praise the police enough for their quick response. I would also like to thank the local community for helping the police in locating the five men who have been arrested.”