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Los Angeles, U.S.A. — The Greater Los Angeles Area (CAIR-LA) chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) urging it to investigate an incident targeting Muslims as a federal hate crime.
CAIR-LA said three pig legs were left at the planned mosque site of Al-Nur Islamic Center in Ontario, California. Worshipers told CAIR-LA that the pig legs were thrown on the site’s driveways just before 10 p.m. on August 7 by two women who then drove off in a white pick-up truck. A security guard witnessed the incident and a report has been filed with the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department. The congregation has faced vocal opposition in the past.
“We urge the DOJ to investigate possible federal charges for the perpetrators of this disturbing incident,” said CAIR-LA Executive Director Hussam Ayloush. “Only firm action by local, state and federal law enforcement authorities will send the message that bias-motivated attacks on Muslims, or Americans of any faith, will not be tolerated.”
Ayloush also noted that four teenagers were arrested following an incident on August 4 in which the American Muslim Association in Hayward, Calififornia, was pelted with oranges and lemons as worshipers prayed inside. At least one worshiper was hit by the objects. A mosque official reported that August 4 harassment was the fourth such incident in the recent past.
A few days ago, CAIR’s national headquarters issued a community safety advisory for American mosques following other incidents targeting mosques in Missouri and Rhode Island and after the deadly shooting attack Sunday on a Sikh temple in Wisconsin.
A CAIR team on August 8 visited the site of the burned Missouri mosque to meet with Muslim leaders and law enforcement officials. The team also took part in an interfaith Ramadan fast-breaking meal (iftar) at a local church on Wednesday evening.
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.