A woman wearing a Charlie Hebdo T-shirt was stabbed multiple times at Speaker's Corner in London's Hyde Park yesterday afternoon.
Hatun Tash, 39 is a Christian preacher who works with Defend Christ Critique Islam (DCCI), she is a regular at the park and is a former Muslim from Turkey. She was left with minor injuries and received treatment at the scene.
Footage which has been widely circulated on social media shows a man dressed in black approach Hatun before stabbing her several times and running away, a police car arrived at the scene soon after.
Christian preacher Hatun Tash has been stabbed in Speaker's Corner. She is a prominent critic of Islam. We must defend freedom of speech and expression in the UK, and not cede the public square to those who wish to censor us intimidate us. pic.twitter.com/Z8aMo1UnP6
— Adrian Hilton (@Adrian_Hilton) July 25, 2021
The Met Police described the incident as "very distressing" and managed to retrieve a discarded knife found nearby. No arrests have been made.
At 1534hours Police attended Hyde Park to reports of a female with stab wounds.
A female is now being treated with minor injuries.
Police have found a knife discarded nearby. Crime scenes are in place.
Any information that can help call 101 and quote CAD 4376/25JUL21
— MPS Westminster (@MPSWestminster) July 25, 2021
Detective Superintendent Alex Bingley, of the Central West Command Unit which covers policing in Westminster, said: "This was clearly a very distressing incident for the woman involved and officers have spent time with her, whilst she was being treated for her injury, to get an account of what happened.
"We know that this assault was witnessed by a number of people, many of whom captured it on their phones.
"I would ask them, if they have not already done so, to contact police."
"We remain in the early stages of our investigation and are working hard to trace the person responsible."
"I would ask people not to speculate on the motive for the attack until we have established the full facts," he added.
Last year, Tash was filmed being punched at Speaker's Corner while holding a cartoon depicting the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). Hatun has herself been arrested for "breaching the peace" and has been escorted out of Hyde Park on several occasions for her own safety. According to a YouTube discussion last year with fellow Christian preacher David Wood, Hatun revealed that police had warned her that her life could be in danger and advised her against attending Hyde Park.
In 2015, the offices of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo was attacked by Islamic extremists leaving 12 people dead following the publication of offensive cartoons of the Prophet.