Categorized | Jewish History, USA

AJC helps rebuild arson- damaged mosque

NEW YORK – The American Jewish Committee (AJC) presented a donation on Friday to help rebuild the Islamic Center of Fort Pierce, Florida, severely damaged in an arson attack in September.

“An attack on any house of worship is an affront to all Americans, regardless of their religious affiliation,” said Robert Silverman, AJC Director of Muslim-Jewish Relations. “Burning a mosque is a hate crime condemned by the entire American Jewish community.” Silverman traveled to Fort Pierce to present the AJC donation to Imam Syed Shafeeq Ur Rahman, director of the Islamic Center, and also to address the congregation during Friday prayers.

“When Jews were persecuted in Europe during the time of the Inquisition centuries ago, they took shelter in Islamic lands. Welcoming those refugees was an act of kindness that will never be forgotten by the Jewish people. Today, AJC is honored to give back in a small, symbolic way,” Silverman told the congregation.

A suspect has been arrested and faces charges of arson and hate-crime enhancement. Federal authorities are examining whether to file charges as well. “The perpetrator should be brought to justice as swiftly as possible and to the fullest extent of the law,” Silverman said.
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