‘We find Muslim “handshake” cop’, boasts Sun

“This is the Muslim WPC who sparked a row by refusing to shake top cop Sir Ian Blair’s hand. Natalie Smart, 26, wears the Metropolitan Police’s regulation hijab on the beat. And our exclusive photos show she takes breaks to pray towards Mecca. Met Commissioner Sir Ian was said to be ‘bloody furious’ when the WPC asked not to shake his hand at a passing-out parade of 200 recruits in December. The devout Muslim convert said she could not touch a man who was not her husband – and also declined a photo with Sir Ian to avoid ‘propaganda’. She now patrols on foot and on mountain bike in an affluent London suburb, part of a ‘safer neighbourhood team’ intended to build trust with locals.”

Sun, 5 February 2007