Imam praised for saving life of suspect in London mosque attack

A Met Police spokesman said: "Police are investigating a report of hoax bomb threat made to the East London Mosque in Whitechapel Road, E1 - officers were called at approximately 2.50pm on Monday, June 19".

It unfolded as a man was receiving first aid from members of the public in an unrelated incident.

"Sadly that man has died".

The Finsbury Park Mosque was associated with extremist ideology for several years after the 9/11 attacks in the United States, but it was shut down and reorganized. Officers who were in the vicinity responded immediately.

Prime Minister Theresa May called the incident, which mirrored other high-profile terror attacks in which vehicles were used as weapons, "every bit as sickening as those that have come before".

Eyewitnesses interviewed by ABC News said people had gathered outside the mosque after prayers when the van drove into them.

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick said it was "quite clearly an attack on Muslims". The statement says: "One man was pronounced dead at the scene".

The Muslim Council of Britain tweeted that the vehicle ran over worshippers as they were leaving the Finsbury Park Mosque after late-night prayers.

Witness Hussain Ali, 28, told the Press Association that "the leader of the mosque said 'You do not touch him'".

"This big van just came and went all over us", witness Abdulrahman Saleh Alamoudi told BuzzFeed News.

And extra police are being deployed to reassure communities, especially those observing Ramadan, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said.

Eight people were taken to hospital after the attack outside the mosque, which is also a community centre.

Khan says all these incidents are attacks on the city's shared values.

Authorities said the driver of the van was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder.

A 48-year-old man was arrested after the public apprehended him, as he left the van and tried to flee the scene.

"He was sitting and holding him like that, people kept holding him", Ali said.

The van driver was detained by a crowd of witnesses, and held for 15 minutes until police arrived.

"By God's grace, we were able to protect him from harm", the imam said.

STINCHFIELD: Alright, so we see an escalating number of attacks, as that is still under investigation.

Video posted on social media appears to show police and bystanders surrounding an injured person on the ground after a van ploughed into worshippers near a London mosque.

Britain's terrorist alert has been set at "severe" meaning an attack is highly likely.

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