(SOUTH PLAINFIELD, N.J., 10/14/16) – The New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NJ) today called on state and federal law enforcement authorities to investigate hate graffiti left at a mosque in Bayonne as a possible bias-motivated crime.
The messages, spray-painted on the walls of the temporary location of Bayonne Muslims (625 Avenue C, in Bayonne, NJ), included “F**k Arabs”, “Jesus Christ,” and “Donald Trump.” Worshipers found the hate messages early this morning while attending morning prayers.
“All Americans must be able to practice their faith and worship as they choose without fear of harassment or intimidation,” said CAIR-NJ Executive Director James Sues. “We urge state and federal law enforcement authorities to investigate this incident as a possible hate crime.”
Bayonne Muslims have faced significant opposition to their plans to build a permanent house of worship from local residents at Zoning Board meetings.
SEE: Bayonne Residents Opposed to Islamic Center to Protest at City Hall
An unprecedented spike in Islamophobic rhetoric and anti-Muslim incidents nationwide in recent months has been attributed at least in part to statements and policy proposals made by public figures like GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump and others.
Earlier today, CAIR’s Michigan chapter called for hate crime charges to be brought against a woman who allegedly threatened to blow up a new Islamic center in that state.
SEE: CAIR-MI Seeks Hate Crime Charges for Threats to Dearborn Islamic Center
The Washington-based Muslim civil rights organization reported that 2016 is on track to be one of the worst years ever for anti-mosque incidents.
CAIR Report: 2016 on Track to Be One of the Worst Years for Anti-Mosque Incidents
The majority of the 2016 incidents have been violent in tone, characterized by intimidation, physical assault and property damage, destruction or vandalism.
CAIR is urging American Muslims and Islamic institutions to take extra security precautions and is offering Muslim community leaders free copies of its booklet, “Best Practices for Mosque and Community Safety.” The booklet may be requested through CAIR’s website: http://www.cair.com/mosque-safety-guide.html
The Washington-based Muslim civil rights group is also asking Muslim community members to report any bias incidents to police and to CAIR’s Civil Rights Department at 202-742-6420 or by filing a report at: http://www.cair.com/report
CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
La misión de CAIR es mejorar la comprensión del Islam, fomentar el diálogo, proteger las libertades civiles, capacitar a los musulmanes estadounidenses, y construir coaliciones que promuevan la justicia y la comprensión mutua.
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