Religious and community leaders plan to hold a candlelight vigil tonight to commemorate the one-year anniversary of an arson fire set inside an Antioch mosque on Aug. 12, 2007.
The Bay Area chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the Islamic Center of the East Bay, members of the interfaith community in Antioch and several Antioch City Council members will gather at 8 p.m. at the mosque, located at 311 W. 18th Street.
The fire, which was reported at about 12:30 a.m. on a Sunday morning, had been set in four different places inside the mosque, which quickly tipped off firefighters that it had been intentionally set.
Smoke, flames and water caused between $400,000 and $460,000 damage, according to the Council on American-Islamic Relations.
Although Antioch police and the Contra Costa County Fire Protection District called in the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to help investigate the fire, the arsonist has still not been caught.
Reconstruction of the mosque began in May and is expected to be completed by the end of September, according to the Council on American-Islamic Relations.
The fire, along with several break-ins and repeated vandalism of the mosque, has created a sense of fear in the Muslim community in Antioch, the Council has said.
However, in response to the arson attack, community leaders formed East County United, an interfaith group that is working to educate people about different faiths and cultures.


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