Police are investigating after vandals sprayed ‘Islam must die’ on a building at the University of Birmingham.
The offensive message – daubed in large black lettering – was also accompanied by a crude drawing of a swastika.
The vandalism was sprayed on the side of a Psychology building at some point between Friday evening and Sunday morning.
It comes after terror expert Steven Emerson said on Fox News last week that Birmingham is a “Muslim-only city” where non-Muslims “don’t go”. The comment sparked outrage and Prime Minister David Cameron branded Emerson an ‘idiot’.
West Midlands Police now confirmed they have launched an investigation into the graffiti and urged witnesses to come forward.
Sergeant Pete Sandhu said: “Mindless hate of this kind has no place in 21st century Birmingham and work is underway to find the person responsible.
“My officers have visited both sites and spoken to a number of people.
“Evidential photographs have been taken and CCTV which may have captured the vandal is currently being reviewed.”
Students from various faiths at the red-brick university have since united to condemn the racist message.
Hannah Myerson, 21, a third year Jewish student studying English, said: “As a Jewish student, I find it deeply disturbing that the rising antisemitism in Europe has reached our campus.
“This incident seeks to make students of all minority groups feel alienated on the basis of their religious beliefs or background, and must be condemned.
“As students of a university that promotes diversity and tolerance, it is important that we stand together in the face of such hatred.”
Another disgusted witness told The Tab student newspaper: “It is scary to think there are people out there who have these thoughts.
“Campus should remain a safe space for everyone.
“Every student, irrespective of his or her race, religion, gender or sexuality should feel no fear or intimidation walking into campus.”
One Islamic student, who wished to remain anonymous, added “Students deserve to walk around Campus free from fear.
“That was not the case at University of Birmingham today.
“Intimidated and scared by Nazi swastikas and hate messages sprayed around campus, students, especially those of minority backgrounds, have been left scared and alarmed.
“Birmingham is a city and University rich in cultural and ethnic diversity and any form of hostility must remain unwelcome.
“All students, regardless of race, religion, gender or sexuality have the right to freely express their identity on campus.
“The attacks were a nasty attempt to silence and frighten students.
“We must show that this is not acceptable and stand up to all forms of racism and discrimination.”
Fiyaz Mughal from organisation TELL MAMA (Measuring Anti-Muslim Attacks) said: “This is appalling, where someone has the guts and chutzpah to place such a statement inferring that Islam must die on a university campus that has lots of Muslim students.
“If that is the case, one can easily infer that this person wants Muslims to be killed and was trying to put themselves outside of hate speech.
“We suggest that CCTV and relevant resources be used to find this individual or set of individuals.”
A university spokeswoman said: “The graffiti was removed as soon as it was discovered and the university is investigating the matter with West Midlands Police.”
Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101 or via the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.