THREE mosques on Teesside have been vandalised with highly offensive language sprayed across walls.

Among them, the Farooq E Azam Mosque & Islamic Centre and Jamia Al-Bilal Mosque in Stockton have been targeted in this latest wave of hate crime.

A number of swear words, crude symbols and references to the 'KKK' have been spray painted on the mosques.

The shocking vandalism has been widely condemned on social media with hundreds of people showing their support for the muslim community.

One said: "Absolutely sickening, no need for it, pathetic excuses for humans, why would you vandalise a religious building."

Another said it was "very sad" to see as he urged people to be "positive and friendly" to everyone.

He said: "This is very sad to see. Vndalising a place of worship where someone is suppose to feel safe.

"We are all the same - be positive and friendly to everyone."

Cleveland Police Officers from Stockton Neighbourhood Policing Team are investigating and enquiries are ongoing in relation to these incidents. 

Superintendent Sharon Cooney said: “Hate crime incidents such as this will not be tolerated.

"Enquiries are ongoing and we would appeal for anyone who may have information regarding these incidents to get in touch with us.”

There will be increased patrols in the area in order to provide reassurance to the local community.

Anyone with information is urged to contact the force on 101 and quote reference number 98264.