LONDON – Muslims, awake to prepare the Suhoor or pre-dawn Ramadan meal, have saved lives of hundreds of Grenfell Tower residents in London, rushing to alert them and provide help and free meals.
“Muslims played a big part in getting a lot of people out,” Andre Barroso, 33, told The Independent on Wednesday, June 14.
“Most of the people I could see were Muslim. They have also been providing food and clothes.”
Residents said they did not hear alarms as the fire swept through the 24-storey tower block in West London.
Instead, they were alerted to the blaze by fellow residents, many of whom were Muslim people who were awake early in the morning to prepare their Suhoor.
The fire broke out not long after midnight and when many people living inside the tower block were asleep.
Rashida, a local resident, told Sky News how Muslim’s observing Ramadan may have saved lives in the tower block, as many of them were awake.
“Most Muslims now observing Ramadan will normally not go to be until about 2am maybe 2.30am,” she said.
“Until they have their late night last meal. They do their last prayer.
“So most of the families around here would have been awake and I think even with the noise with the helicopters, it would have brought a lot of attention to a lot of residents non-Muslim as well that would have thought something’s going on that’s not quite normal.”
Nadia Yousuf, 29, told BuzzFeed Muslim residents were among the first to notice the fire, as they woke up to prepare to break their fast.
“They saw it just after they woke up to eat”, she said.
Many people have donated water, food and clothing to the nearby St Clement church, where locals have taken refuge. Others are distributing water bottles to those waiting outside.
“Everybody was hands on. It was wonderful to see everyone come together,” Barroso added.