(WASHINGTON, D.C., 5/28/13) — The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation's largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today called on state and federal law enforcement authorities to investigate vandalism targeting a Georgia mosque as a hate crime.
Police in Alpharetta, Ga., are investigating graffiti spray-painted on the sign for the Islamic Center of North Fulton. The graffiti included the phrase “London Justice,” an apparent reference to the recent attack on a British soldier in London.
“We urge law enforcement authorities to send a clear message that bias attacks on American houses of worship will not be tolerated and that the perpetrators will be brought to justice,” said CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper. “Leaders of American mosques can help protect their congregations by implementing the security guidelines outlined in CAIR's new safety publication.”
Last week, CAIR began distributing new safety and security guidelines to mosques and other Islamic institutions nationwide. The new CAIR publication, “Best Practices for Mosque and Community Safety,” was produced in response to recent bias attacks, including a series of incidents last year targeting American Muslim institutions.
To request a free e-copy of CAIR's “Best Practices for Mosque and Community Safety,” go to: http://www.cair.com/mosque-safety-guide.html
CAIR's guidelines, which include safety recommendations drafted by a leading security consultant, are designed to be used by mosque officials, Muslim school administrators and other community leaders and activists who seek to identify and eliminate vulnerabilities to bias-motivated attacks.
The mosque safety booklet includes sections outlining initial security steps to take and how to assess an institution's vulnerability to attack. Other sections include a checklist for safety preparation and planning, details on security equipment, how to deal with an armed intruder, procedures for handling bomb threats or suspicious packages, and links to security resources available from private and government sources.
Earlier today, the Minnesota chapter of CAIR said it has called on the U.S. Department of Education to investigate a violent altercation in a classroom between a teacher and Somali student.
Tomorrow, CAIR's Michigan chapter will hold a news conference in Detroit prior to a hearing on a federal lawsuit against U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the FBI over the repeated detention and questioning of Muslims about their religious beliefs and practices by federal agents at and inside the United States-Canada border and other ports of entry.
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.
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CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, email@example.com; CAIR Communications Manager Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787, 202-341-4171, firstname.lastname@example.org