(WASHINGTON, D.C., 8/9/05) – A prominent national Islamic civil rights and advocacy group today called on law enforcement authorities to treat an assault this morning on a Virginia Muslim woman as a hate crime. The Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) reported that a 23-year-old Muslim woman, who is 8 months pregnant and wears and Islamic head scarf, said she was out for her morning walk in Arlington, Va., when three white men in a pick-up truck began screaming anti-Muslim and racist slurs at her. According to the victim, the men shouted, “You terrorist b*tch, go back to your country. . .You n*gger b*tch.” (The woman is African-American.) The truck drove away and then returned as the woman continued on her walk. One of the men, who was wearing military-style clothing, allegedly got out of the vehicle and began shoving the woman and preventing her from moving away. During the assault, he shouted, “You terrorist b*tch. . . We’re going to kick your a*s. . . you’re nothing.” The other men then called the attacker back to the truck and it sped off.
“We believe these types of incidents are the direct result of the growing level of virulent anti-Muslim rhetoric Americans are exposed to on the Internet, in newspaper editorial pages and on radio talk shows,” said CAIR Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper. “Our nation’s political and religious leaders must begin to challenge Islamophobic hate-mongers.” Hooper noted that a Washington, D.C., radio talk show host was recently suspended without pay for stating repeatedly that “Islam is a terrorist organization.” He added that an Illinois man was arrested just last Friday for threatening to bomb CAIR’s Capitol Hill headquarters. In July, a national council of American Muslim religious scholars issued a “fatwa,” or formal Islamic legal ruling, against terrorism and religious extremism. That fatwa has been endorsed by some 200 Islamic groups, leaders and institutions. SEE: http://www.cair.com/includes/Anti-TerrorList.pdf
CAIR, America’s largest Muslim civil liberties group, has 31 offices and chapters nationwide and in Canada. 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. To read CAIR’s Mission, Vision Statement and Core Principles, go to: http://www.cair-net.org/default.asp?Page=About