SOUTH PLAINFIELD, N.J.
June 29, 2013
/PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The
chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-NJ) today called on state and federal law enforcement authorities to investigate vandalism of a mosque in that state as a possible hate crime.
An official with the Islamic Center of
, told CAIR that someone spray-painted a Nazi swastika on an exterior door of the mosque Friday evening. The alleged perpetrator was caught on surveillance video entering the mosque and then going out to a vehicle and returning to spend time at the site of the graffiti.
Police are investigating the incident as "criminal mischief."
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The mosque had faced opposition several years ago when it was in its planning stage.
SEE: Suit Seeks to Overturn Mosque Plan in
"Because of the nature of this incident and because of other recent incidents targeting American mosques, we urge local, state and federal law enforcement authorities to investigate a possible bias motive," said CAIR-NJ Civil Rights Director
Ali noted that earlier this month, CAIR's
chapter called on law enforcement authorities to investigate repeated vandalism targeting a mosque in that state.
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He said CAIR made similar calls for hate crime investigations after some two dozen paintballs were fired at a
mosque and a
mosque was vandalized.
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CAIR recently began distributing new safety and security guidelines to mosques and other Islamic institutions nationwide.