(WASHINGTON, D.C., 5/21/19) – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today condemned a pair of threats targeting mosques in Virginia and Florida, calling them symptomatic of rising Islamophobia in the United States.
On Monday, police arrested 48-year-old Renee Marie Nunnally for allegedly threatening to bomb the Petersburg Muslim Center in Virginia.
SEE: Dinwiddie woman charged with threatening to bomb the Petersburg Muslim Center
In Florida, police arrested Brandyn Luis Hernandez for reportedly posting threats on Facebook against the Islamic Center of Greater Miami-Masjid Miami Gardens. In the posts, Hernandez allegedly wrote “(Expletive) the Muslim who stole my phone. (Masjid 183) I’m going to have your hand, with no trial, no due process. #TRYME” and threatened to “kill Muslims one by one.”
SEE: Man with ‘hatred for Muslims’ accused of threatening Miami Gardens mosque
“These incidents are symptomatic of a rising level of Islamophobia clearly linked to the rise of Donald Trump and his mainstreaming of anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant rhetoric,” said CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper. “We urge prosecutors to take these threats seriously, prosecute them accordingly, and demonstrate that bigotry will not be tolerated anywhere in the United States.”
Hooper added that CAIR has reported more than 500 incidences of anti-Muslim bias or harassment in the United States in 2019 alone.
SEE: More Than 500 Attacks on Muslims in America This Year
Earlier this month, CAIR-Connecticut called for an investigation into a possible bias motive for a fire set at a New Haven mosque.
SEE: CAIR-Connecticut Calls for Probe of Possible Bias Motive for New Haven Mosque Arson
The Washington-based civil rights organization is urging mosques and other Islamic institutions to take measures outlined in its "Best Practices for Mosque and Community Safety" booklet.
Advice offered in CAIR’s security publication is applicable to all institutions, regardless of organizational mission.
The booklet may be viewed at: https://tinyurl.com/BestSafetyPractices
Earlier this year, CAIR offered a community safety webinar with two Department of Homeland Security (DHS) security experts. Webinar participants included staff and administrators from some 100 Islamic centers, mosques, Islamic schools, and other Muslim community institutions nationwide.
Video: CAIR Islamic Community Safety Webinar with DHS Officials
CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.
La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.
CONTACT: CAIR Government Affairs Director Robert McCaw, 202-742-6448, firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, email@example.com