Mosques vandalized in NE, CA and NY
WASHINGTON, D.C., September 6, 2005: The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today called on local and national law enforcement authorities to investigate possible bias motives for recent vandalism at mosques in Nebraska, California and New York.
CAIR, a Washington-based Islamic civil rights and advocacy group, also urged Muslim institutions nationwide to review security procedures at local facilities.
According to police reports, the Islamic Foundation in Lincoln, Neb., was vandalized twice this past weekend. Vandals reportedly broke a window and spray-painted racist graffiti such as "white power" and a Nazi swastika on the building and a car parked at the site.
Read: "Nebraska Islamic Foundation Vandalized Twice Over Weekend"
In California, representatives of the Islamic Center of Redlands say their mosque has been a target of vandalism and trespassing. An incident during prayers on Aug. 19, during which unknown people threw beer bottles, poured alcohol into a worshipper's car and shouted epithets, prompted a letter to city officials.
Read: "Redlands Mosque Tells of Vandalism"
And in Beacon, N.Y., a city garbage receptacle was reportedly thrown through a window of Masjid Ur-Rashid on August 23.
"We urge local law enforcement authorities and the FBI to determine whether anti-Muslim bias played a role in any of these incidents," said CAIR Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper. "We also ask local Muslim leaders to review security measures at mosques, Islamic schools and other facilities." He urged that mosques consider installing exterior video cameras, perimeter floodlights and burglar alarm systems.
Hooper added that CAIR offers a "Muslim Community Safety Kit" containing advice on improving mosque security. The safety kit may be obtained free of charge by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org. (Include name, address and phone number when requesting the safety kit.) It may also be ordered at: https://www.cair-net.org/comersus/store/comersus_viewItem.asp?idProduct=1021