Oxford St probe ‘ongoing’ as police deny dropping anti-Muslim slur
The Metropolitan Police have said no updates have been issued into their “ongoing” investigation into the antisemitic abuse directed at a group of Jewish people on a bus in Oxford Street who were celebrating Chanukah.
A spokesperson for the Met declined to confirm claims – made by the Campaign Against Antisemitism – that a police source said they were investigating allegations of one victim of the incident making an anti-Muslim slur in response to the group that made Nazi salutes towards their bus.
The Met’s press spokesperson said no updates or developments to their investigation had been made to to media organisations since a December 7 statement was issued appealing for information on three men, who were said to have “shouted antisemitic abuse”.
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It is unclear if the Met have launched a separate investigation into claims made in reports published by the BBC, which alleged one of the victims could be heard making an anti-Muslim slur.
In a statement issued on Sunday, ahead of a protest organised by the group outside the broadcaster on Monday evening, the CAA said: “We understand that police investigating the antisemitic attack on Jewish teenagers celebrating Chanukah on Oxford Street have found no evidence of the supposed ‘anti-Muslim slur’ from the victims that BBC London has said could be ‘clearly heard’ and now that part of their investigation has been closed down.
“The BBC must immediately release whatever evidence they have based their reporting on or apologise fulsomely and publicly.”
The group added: “This incident is one of many in which the BBC has victim-blamed Jewish people for antisemitism, downplayed racism towards Jews, platformed antisemitism and fuelled antisemitism in Britain. This bias against Jews has not gone unnoticed.”
The BBC eventually corrected its story about the attack, changing its original claim that “some racial slurs” could be heard from the bus where the Jewish students took shelter.
The story now alleges a single “racial slur” is audible on the footage.
The BBC said: “The main focus is the actions of the individuals the police want to identify. The audio appears to show that a slur can be heard coming from the bus. We have changed our story to clarify only one such slur can be heard clearly.”
The Board of Deputies has condemned the coverage saying the BBC has a “very serious case to answer”.
The bus had by privately hired last month by Chabad to take around 20 people to central London to celebrate the first night of Chanukah when the incident, that caused widespread shock and anger, took place.