ALMOST 250 more Islamophobic hate crimes have been reported to police this year compared to 2010, according to new figures.

A Freedom of Information request found the police are receiving thousands of racist hate crime reports every year.

The figures show 3,922 racism hate crimes were logged up to August 2018, compared to a total of 2,140 throughout the entire of 2010.

A total of 4,434 racism hate crimes were reported last year, 317 hate crimes were for Islamophobia and 53 for Anti-Semitism.

In 2010, the figures stood at 2,140 for racism, 30 for Islamophobia and nine for Anti-Semitism.

The rising figures have created concern in the Asian community.

Mohammed Rafiq Sehgal, of Bradford Council For Mosques, said: "We are extremely concerned about the persistent spike in Islamophobia and racially motivated crimes of hatred in our district as reported by the West Yorkshire police. This is an unwelcomed development for the district. It is seems that we as a society are going backward.

"Hate crimes are dividing our society and are significantly holding back our progress towards achieving a socially integrated society. We need a long-term concerted plan and action and not a piecemeal approach which seems to have become a hallmark of our approach.

Martin Baines, chair of Bradford Hate Crime Alliance, said: “We have known for a long time that hate crime is massively under-reported.

People in the past have not always felt confident about reporting it to the police.

In Bradford we have pioneered different pathways for reporting hate crime, so people can report hate crime in our community based reporting centres, online or on the telephone in addition to going to a police station or contacting the police.

“Therefore increases in the number of reported hate crimes of all types can be partly attributed to our partnership working.

“Having said that, other events nationally and internationally will have resulted in increased incidents which show in the figures."

A spokesman for West Yorkshire Police said a reason for the rise in the number of reports could be down to an increase in publicity.

He said: "A number of sub-categories for the recording of faith and disability hate crimes are being introduced to get a better understanding of the impact of national and international events on local communities and improve and target services for victims.

"Recent publicity may also have encouraged victims of hate incidents and crimes to come forward and report their experience to the police. West Yorkshire Police support the annual Hate Crime Awareness Week in partnership with the Police and Crime Commissioner in order to highlight the issue of hate crime."