The BBC has been accused of censorship after Twitter uses suggested references to ‘Allah’ and the ‘Koran’ were edited out of a TV interview.
- Karrien Stevens, who runs the nursery, said staff member was stabbed
- She told reporters that the woman, named only as Katie, was attacked from behind by the trio chanting ‘Allah’ and slashed with a Stanley knife
- But in her BBC interview the references to Allah appear to have been taken out
- The quote does appear in the online written version of the story
- Police are treating the attack as a ‘hate crime’ and not terror related
Karrien Stevens, who runs Little Diamonds Nursery in Hermon Hill, London said yesterday that a member of her staff was punched, kicked and slashed with a ‘Stanley knife’ by three ‘Muslim women’ chanting about ‘Allah’ and the ‘Koran’.
The televised interview, which was shared on Twitter, shows a cut at 17 seconds – the point where users suggested Ms Stevens would have gone on to make her comments about Islam.
Some Twitter users believe that these comments were edited out because Ms Stevens is quoted in a written BBC Online article saying the women ‘shouted out “something to do with Allah and the Koran”.’
The Metropolitan Police is treating the assault as a ‘hate crime’ and not terror related.
Ms Stevens told journalists that the victim, identified only as Katie, was on her way into work at about 9.30am in Wanstead High Street when she was followed by three women ‘dressed in black’.
She said: ‘They pulled her to the ground, punched her, kicked her. One of them pulled out a knife and cut her arm from her wrist to her elbow.
She added the ‘girls were behind her chanting the Koran, “Allah”.’
Ms Stevens did not witness the assault herself but claimed she spoke to the victim after she was rescued and brought to the nursery by a passerby.
The 34-second clip was edited half way through as Ms Stevens talked about the attackers, causing speculation that the references were deliberately removed.
One viewer tweeted: ‘Yep… at 17 seconds… Clip altered.’
Another said: ‘Sounds like biased reporting.’
It was described as ‘shameless censorship’ by another Twitter user.
Ms Stevens told reporters that the victim was ‘very emotional’ after the assault and sustained ‘some cracked ribs’ and had to have stitches.
She added that she believed the attackers were strangers and the assault was unprovoked.
The victim, described as a white woman, was attacked less than 10 minutes’ walk from the nursery.
Paul Ashmore, 31, a mixing and mastering engineer in South Woodford, said his fiancee and child were held on lockdown at Wanstead Church School, a 30-second walk away.
He said his fiancee called him to say the school was not allowing anyone to leave ‘because there was a stabbing outside’, and added that the police did not know ‘where the persons who did it were’.
They were initially told it was gang-related, he said.
‘My instant thought was to collect my fiancee and kid and get them to safety not knowing the full extent of what was happening. But I was thinking the worst.
‘I instantly, after what has been happening regarding terrorists, thought the worst and informed her I will drive up to collect them,’ Mr Ashmore said
A Metropolitan Police spokesman said the attack was being treated as a hate crime.
He added that the Met’s Counter Terrorism Command was aware of the assault but is not investigating ‘at this time’.
Officers drove the victim around the area in an attempt to find the perpetrators but no arrests were made.
A spokesman for the London Ambulance service said: ‘We sent an ambulance crew to the scene, arriving in under six minutes.
‘We treated a woman and the scene and took her to a hospital in east London.’