Four men remain in custody after anti-Semitic abuse was heard being shouted from a car in north London.
In videos shared on social media, a group of cars decorated with the Palestinian flag pulled up at traffic lights, with passengers shouting offensive language and threats against Jews.
Scotland Yard said four men were arrested after a car was stopped at around 6.30pm on Sunday (16 May).
A statement said: “Police received reports of people shouting anti-Semitic abuse from a car travelling within a convoy of vehicles through the St John’s Wood area on the afternoon of Sunday May 16.
“Enquiries were carried out and officers traced a car to the A40 in Hillingdon. The police helicopter was deployed and officers stopped the car at approximately 18.30hrs.
“Four men were arrested on suspicion of racially aggravated public order offences. They were taken into custody at a west London police station where they remain.”
Superintendent Jo Edwards, in charge of investigation into the video, said: “This behaviour was utterly shocking and will not be tolerated.
“I understand that this would have caused considerable concern within the community and we have arranged extra patrols in the St John’s Wood and Golders Green areas this evening.”
‘There is no place for anti-Semitism in our society’
The incident received cross-party criticism, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson condemning the acts.
He said: “There is no place for anti-Semitism in our society.
“Ahead of Shavuot, I stand with Britain’s Jews who should not have to endure the type of shameful racism we have seen today.”
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said: “Anti-Semitism, misogyny and hate have no place on our streets or in our society.”
“There must be consequences,” he added.
Gideon Falter, chief executive of Campaign Against Antisemitism, said: “We are deeply concerned for the safety of British Jews. We are grateful for the allyship of those who have spoken up for us but alarmed by the incitement that drowns it out.”
The incident comes after thousands of people marched through London to the gates of the Israeli embassy on Saturday (15 May), with protests also taking place in other cities across the UK in solidarity with the people of Palestine.
Thousands of Palestinians have been forced to flee their homes after a week of sustained conflict, as Palestinian militant group Hamas fired hundreds of rockets into Israel, whose military responded by barraging the Gaza Strip with tank fire and air strikes.