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Last Updated: Friday, 7 July 2006, 15:09 GMT 16:09 UK
Family backs public inquiry calls
Dr Kamrul Hasan

Relatives of a Muslim who died in the 7 July attacks have backed calls for a public inquiry into the bombings.

A year after Shahara Islam, 20, was killed in the Tavistock Square bus blast, her uncle urged the Prime Minister to reconsider his decision.

Dr Kamrul Hassan read a statement from the family during a press conference at the East London Islamic Centre.

Mr Hassan said: "We fully support other families of victims of 7 July in their call for a public inquiry."

He added: "We owe it to her (Shahara) and the rest of the victims to find out why this happened, how it happened and what we as a country need to do to prevent it from ever happening again."

Terrible acts

Described as a outgoing woman who made friends easily, Miss Islam grew up in Whitechapel, east London, and regularly attended the East London Mosque.

The statement on the first anniversary of her death said the family hoped that Britons would "not see such terrible acts committed in our country ever again".

"Our religion, Islam, stands for peace, a fact that is known by all ordinary Muslims, and which is regularly preached in the sermons by our imams."

Earlier a group of about 100 people, representing a diverse range of faiths, observed a two-minute silence in Altab Ali park close to the mosque.

Shahara Islam
Shahara was described as an outgoing woman

They listened to a statement read by Father Alan Green, of the Tower Hamlets Inter Faith Forum, which said that the terrorists had failed to "tear our communities apart".

Fr Green went on: "We believe that faith is a positive force for overcoming division and building good community relations between people of different ethnicities, culture and races."

Echoing these sentiments, Tower Hamlets mayor councillor Shafigul Haqu said it was important to show a united front.

"In Tower Hamlets 78 languages are being spoken, so that shows the diversity," he said.

"It's very crucial for the community to come together and the message goes out that we are united against terrorism or any acts of violence."

Sad and scary time

Joining the line-up of community representatives, Respect MP George Galloway said: "It's a very sombre occasion. I think everyone's feeling sad.

"I saw the parents of a victim being interviewed last night and it was very harrowing to watch.

"We are living in a world full of hatred and violence and it's getting worse."

People holding two minute silence
About 100 people gathered to remember the victims in a nearby park

Cath Esdaile, 25, was among a small army of workers who flooded out of nearby offices to pay their respects.

"It's a very sad and scary time," she said.

Recalling the events of a year ago, she added: "I remember that my dad called me from Australia to see if I was OK.

"We didn't really know what was happening at that time and I thought it was ironic that they knew before we did."


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