CAIRO – Receiving the shocking news of Friday’s attack on a French factory, Muslims rushed to condemn the extremist attack as contradicting with Islamic tenets of peace.
“Shocked by sickening violence in #Grenoble If attacker claims to do this in Islam’s name, he is misguided. Thoughts & prayers with victims,” Dr Shuja Shafi, Secretary General of the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) tweeted on Friday.
France was shocked by news of an attack on a gas factory in southeastern France this morning which left one dead and several wounded.
Friday’s incident occurred around 10 am, when reports indicate that two suspects allegedly rammed their way into the US-owned Air Products gas factory outside of Lyon, in southeastern France, reports Agence France-Presse.
They set off several small explosions, according to witness accounts.
Officials found a decapitated body and head, which was covered in Arabic writing, near the factory, but it is unclear if the corpse was transported to the site or the mutilation took place during the attack.
There are also reports of a flag with Arabic writing found at the scene.
French President Francois Hollande said in a televised address from a summit in Brussels, Belgium, that the incident was a “pure terrorist attack.”
“The attack was of a terrorist nature since a body was discovered, decapitated and with inscriptions,” Hollande said.
“This attack was a vehicle, driven by a person, maybe accompanied by another, who rammed at great speed into this factory.
“There is no doubt about the intention, which was to cause an explosion.”
The blasts were triggered when two attackers deliberately crashed a car into gas canisters, according to police.
Reports said a 30-year-old man had been arrested. He is understood to have been known to foreign intelligence services.
France attack coincided with other two attacks on Kuwait and Tunisia which resulted in the death of scores of Muslims on Friday while fasting.
“More Muslims have been killed by the hands of these terrorists than non Muslims. THIS IS NOT ISLAAM!!! #Grenoble #Tunisia #Kuwait,” @BintHadi_ tweeted.
“Extremely disturbed by the events today in #Grenoble and #Sousse,allegedly by so-called Muslims on a Friday during the Holy Month of Ramzan [Ramadan],” @zahidlalani added.
The attack comes at tense time for the country’s six million Muslims who have been facing increasing hatred since Paris attacks last January.
The National Observatory Against Islamophobia said over 100 incidents have been reported to the police since the Charlie Hebdo attacks of January 7-9.
The observatory also noted that more than 222 separate acts of anti-Muslim behavior were recorded in the first month after the January attacks.
In April, the National Observatory Against Islamophobia warned of an unprecedented increase in Islamophobic attacks in France during the first three months of 2015, rising by six-fold than in 2014.
Islamophobic actions soared by 500% compared to the same period in 2011, according to the observatory.