U.K. far-right extremist sets himself on fire as he attacks synagogue

Tristan Morgan was handed a hospital order without limit of time by a London Criminal Court on Friday.

July 8, 2019 10:38
2 minute read.
Tristan Morgan sets Exeter synagogue on fire on July 21, 2018.

Tristan Morgan sets Exeter synagogue on fire on July 21, 2018.. (photo credit: DEVON & CORNWALL POLICE)

A London criminal court handed a far-right extremist that tried to set a synagogue on fire a hospital order without limit of time on Friday, CNN reported.

On July 21, 2018, Tristan Morgan set the 18th century synagogue in the city of Exeter on fire.

A clip released by the Devon & Cornwall Police on Twitter shows the 52-year-old man breaking a window with a hammer, then pouring something from a tank inside the building, before igniting it. The blast of the fire was so powerful that it backfired against Morgan himself, causing severe burns.

The 52-year-old chose to attack the synagogue, the third oldest in England, on the day of Tisha Be' Av, which commemorates the destruction of the two temples in Jerusalem and other tragedies of Jewish history.

"Please tell me that synagogue is burning to the ground. If not, it's poor preparation," Morgan said as he was put in a police van, according to the BBC.

The British public broadcasting company also pointed out that Morgan had previously admitted arson and two terrorism-related charges, for encouraging terrorism by publishing a song entitled White Man to live-streaming website Soundcloud and possessing a copy of the White Resistance Manual.

"Morgan is clearly very unwell and following multiple detailed medical assessments, it is clear that a hospital order is appropriate. I would like to thank our partners and local residents who have given such tremendous support to the synagogue," police superintendent Matt Lawler commented according to a Tweet by the Devon & Cornwall Police.

According to a statement by the police, the President of the Synagogue, Richard Halsey thanked the local police for "their brilliant response" and for "their thorough investigation and support since the traumatic events of last year."

"In particular we wish to highlight how the community of Exeter has come together to demonstrate the genuine positivity in our city. We live in a wonderful place that has demonstrated tolerance and support for each other at times of need, and the whole Jewish community sincerely appreciates the support we have had from all faiths here in Exeter," Halsey added.

The community was able to start again holding the services in the synagogue in October and it re-dedicated it in April.

Following the attack, solidarity to the Jewish community was expressed by several representatives of Exeter religious institutions, including the Exeter Cathedral and the Exeter Mosque.

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