British police on Monday charged a Ukranian man with the “terrorist-related” murder of an elderly Muslim man who was walking home from a mosque.
Pavlo Lapshyn, 25, a postgraduate student from Dnipropetrovsk, had been detained last week as part of a separate investigation into bombings at three mosques in central England.
West Midlands Police said it had charged Lapshyn with the murder of 82-year-old Mohammed Saleem in Birmingham on April 29 and that he would appear at Westminster Magistrates Court in London on Tuesday.
Saleem, a grandfather, was stabbed while on his way home after prayers at a nearby mosque.
Police said Lapshyn, who was in Britain on a sponsored work placement, was still being questioned in connection with the bombings near mosques in the central English towns of Walsall, Wolverhampton and Tipton.
A 22-year-old Ukrainian who was detained over the blasts was released without charge.
British police officers are working with Ukranian officials to learn more about Lapshyn’s past history and investigators plan to travel to Ukraine in coming days, the force said.
It said there did not appear to be any “ongoing threat” from the case.
There has been a rise in anti-Muslim incidents in Britain since May, when a soldier was hacked to death on a London street in a suspected Islamist attack.
The explosion at the mosque in Tipton on July 12 coincided with the funeral of 25-year-old Lee Rigby, who was murdered in broad daylight near his barracks in Woolwich, southeast London.
Ukrainian charged with ‘terrorist’ murder of British Muslim