Arrest after swastikas graffitied in Belsize Square

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Antisemitic graffiti was found in Belsize Park - Credit: Sally Patterson

A 16-year-old boy has been arrested in Belsize Park after swastikas were found painted on walls.

At least five swastikas were graffitied around Belsize Avenue and Glenilla Road this evening (October 30).

Police said they were alerted to reports of a man spraying swastikas at around 7.40pm. Officers attended and began a search for the suspect.

Shortly after 8pm, police said they located a 16-year-old boy nearby who was arrested on suspicion of religiously aggravated criminal damage. He has been taken into custody.

The Met said further enquiries have established that other swastikas have been sprayed on walls in the surrounding area. An investigation is under way to determine if the same person is responsible.

Co-Chairs of the Camden Faith Leaders’ Forum, Cllr Abdul Hai and Phil Rosenberg, said they had been made aware of the graffiti.

They said: "We immediately started working with the local Jewish community and Camden Cabinet Members who saw to a quick response which led to an arrest and rapid clean up operation.

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"We pay tribute to all involved. As faith communities we stand together against all bigotry in our borough."

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said on Twitter: "Sick to hear about this. Antisemitism has no place in our city. The Metropolitan Police has taken swift action, arresting a suspect.

"I urge anyone with any information about this appalling incident to contact the police."

The Board of Deputies of British Jews said it has worked to coordinate responses to the graffiti with Camden Council and the police.

It posted on Twitter: "We welcome swift action by all concerned, including an arrest and start of clean up."

Anyone who witnessed the offences taking place or who has other information and has not yet spoken to police should call 101, giving the reference 6604/30OCT.

Information can also be provided to Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.