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NW Muslim and Arab Leaders Seek Protection in Wake of Mosque ArsonSalem-News.com
Local Muslim and Arab Organizations Ask City and State Authorities to Help Protect the Muslim and Arab Communities.
(PORTLAND, Ore.) - The Muslim American and Arab American leaders of Oregon and Southwest Washington are calling on the city and state authorities to setup protection for the region's Muslim American and Arab community after an intentionally-set fire damaged a mosque in Corvallis, Oregon.
Fire officials say the Sunday morning blaze damaged parts of the Salman Al-Farsi Islamic Center in Corvallis, Oregon.
"We are worried and saddened that the plot, and the response by a small number of extremists, have created a potentially dangerous situation in which innocent Muslim-Americans are exposed to retaliation," Imam Mikal Shabazz, President of the Oregon Islamic Chaplains Organization and a prominent Muslim leader in Portland, said on Sunday as he learned of the mosque fire.
"The bombing plot is reprehensible, and the harm will be magnified even further if it leads to violence, either physical or verbal, against Muslim members of our community who had nothing to do with the plot, and who stand with all Americans in rejecting terrorism," Shabazz said, adding that he had spoken with an African-American Muslim woman who was verbally attacked by a young man in Southeast Portland, before others intervened in her defense.
On Saturday, before any attack on the mosque, leaders of the local Muslim and Arab Organizations put out a statement condemning Friday's alleged actions. "We denounce this horrible plot in the strongest terms and repudiate all those who commit such acts of mindless violence in the name of Islam," the release said. "Islam is a religion of peace and these acts are not the legitimate acts of Muslims."
"Just as American Muslims and Arab Americans condemn any act that would threaten our nation's safety and security, we ask our fellow faith leaders, city and state political leaders, and people of good will to reject any attacks on American Arabs and Muslims or their religious or cultural institutions," said Wajdi Said, Muslim Educational Trust President.
On behalf of the Shura Council of Oregon and Southwest Washington
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