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Funding campaign launched for vandalised Minnesota mosque

30th Oct 2020
Funding campaign launched for vandalised Minnesota mosque

(Photo courtesy of Egal Talyan)

Elham Asaad Buaras

A $20,000 fund raising campaign has been launched for an Islamic centre in Minnesota, US, that has been subject to a series of vandalism in the summer.

Egal Talyan who launched the GoFundMe page for the St Paul-based Islamic centre on October 5 said, “Dar Uloom Islamic Center was vandalized several times last summer, starting on June 15, and it continues to face harassment.”
Extensive damage was inflicted on the centre’s school building which included graffiti on the hallways, entrance, classrooms, and several external and internal doors.

On August 24, the front door was destroyed after repairing the door that day; vandals broke the door down again the following night. Cars in the private parking lot were also vandalized and broken into.

Talyan said, “Congregants are on edge due to these growing safety concerns. We have linked several images displaying the vandalism.”

It’s unclear what the vandals’ motivations were. Because it happened at a mosque, CAIR-Minnesota regards it as a bias-motivated crime, until law enforcement makes arrests and more can be determined, said the organization’s Executive Director Jaylani Hussein.

“We are not concerned about residents in the immediate neighbourhood around Dar Uloom Islamic Centre, who have been friendly and supportive of their local mosque. We suspect that extremists outside of the community are committing these hateful acts,” said Hussein.

“Mosques in Minnesota have been targeted with bombings, vandalism and more. Since 2016, we have seen an increase in other Islamophobic threats and attacks. We cannot accept these assaults on mosques that intend to intimidate Muslims and the Dar Uloom Islamic Centre community. We will not be intimidated, and we will not stop our worship.”

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