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For further information or to comment on this press release, please contact the organization directly.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 28, 2010
2:57 PM

CONTACT: Council on Islamic-American Relations (CAIR)

Texas Executive Director Mustafaa Carroll, 214-296-7138;
CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper,
202-744-7726, 202-488-8787, E-Mail: ihooper@cair.com;

CAIR: Texas Mosque Targeted by Arson, Hate Graffiti, Slurs

Muslim civil rights group asks FBI to encourage police protection at U.S. mosques

WASHINGTON - July 28 -  The Texas office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-TX) reported today that local police and the FBI are investigating possibly bias-motivated incidents of arson, hate graffiti and racial slurs targeting a mosque in that state.

[NOTE: CAIR is also looking into a report of recent vandalism at a mosque under construction in Round Rock, Texas. A motive has not yet been established in that case.]

CAIR-TX said a Sunday fire at the playground of Dar El-Eman Islamic Center in Arlington, Texas, followed an incident two days earlier in which obscene anti-Muslim graffiti was discovered in the mosque's parking lot. A third incident involved racial slurs being shouted at worshippers on Sunday.

A spokesperson for Arlington police told CAIR that arson investigators and the FBI are involved in the probe. Police patrols have been stepped up in the area surrounding the mosque.

CAIR-TX took part in a Tuesday meeting at the mosque in which the FBI and other fire and law enforcement officials discussed the investigation.

The Texas Penal Code allows for enhanced penalties if an offense is "committed because of bias or prejudice."

SEE: Penalty if Offense Committed Because of Bias or Prejudice

“We appreciated the prompt and professional actions of local and federal agencies in responding to these disturbing incidents,” said CAIR-Texas Executive Director Mustafaa Carroll, who took part in Tuesday’s meeting at the mosque. "We ask the FBI to encourage police departments nationwide to step up protection at American mosques and Islamic centers."

SEE: New York City Police to Increase Mosque Patrols During Ramadan

He noted that a mosque in Jacksonville, Fla., was recently the target of a bomb attack and that mosques are facing opposition nationwide.

SEE: Fla. Mosque Attack Called Terrorism
CAIR: Islamic Group Denounces Planned Calif. Mosque Protest
CAIR: Tenn. Lt. Gov’s Remarks on Islam Raise Uproar
CAIR Video: Anti-Islam Bus Ads Go Up in SF Bay Area
Fox Opens Its Airwaves to Anti-Muslim Activist Geller

Carroll said CAIR is urging American Muslim individuals and institutions to review advice on security procedures contained in its "Muslim Community Safety Kit."

SEE: Muslim Community Safety Kit

CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties group. 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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