WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today called on state and federal law enforcement authorities to step up protection for a Kentucky mosque that received an emailed death threat this morning.
The Islamic Center of Lexington in Lexington, received the email, which stated: “I’m going to kill everyone I there [sic] you Muslim f**ks. Salabis is coming for you.”
“This clear terroristic death threat targeting a house of worship must be treated seriously by local, state and federal law enforcement authorities and the perpetrator should be apprehended and brought to justice,” said CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper. “Our nation’s leaders must send a clear message challenging the rising Islamophobia that leads to such threats.”
Hooper added that earlier today, CAIR cited an FBI alert to New York police about an Arizona anti-Islam extremist who is reportedly traveling to that state to “confront” Muslims.
Earlier this week, CAIR released an initial report on the unprecedented backlash and discrimination targeting the nation’s Muslim community since the Nov. 13 terror attacks in Paris.
CAIR notes that it has received more reports about acts of Islamophobic discrimination, intimidation, threats, and violence targeting American Muslims (or those perceived to be Muslim) and Islamic institutions in the past week-and-a-half than during any other limited period of time since the 9/11 terror attacks.
CAIR attributes this spike in anti-Muslim incidents to the Paris attacks and to the mainstreaming of Islamophobia by political candidates and lawmakers in the run-up to the 2016 general election.
Of particular concern is the extreme anti-Muslim rhetoric and falsehoods being espoused by leading Republican presidential candidates Donald Trump and Ben Carson.
Another contributing factor to this marked rise in Islamophobic hostility is state governors and lawmakers playing on public fears and spreading misinformation about the federal government’s ability to screen Syrian refugees being resettled into the United States.
CAIR offers community leaders free copies of its booklet, “Best Practices for Mosque and Community Safety,” which was published in response to past threats to and attacks on American mosques. The booklet may be requested through CAIR’s website: http://www.cair.com/mosque-safety-guide.html
The Washington-based Muslim civil rights group is also asking Muslim community members to report any bias incidents to police and to CAIR’s Civil Rights Department at 202-742-6420 or by filing a report at: http://www.cair.com/civil-rights/report-an-incident/view/form.html
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.