SHAFAQNA – According to Reuters, more than 200 protesters, some armed, berated Islam and its Prophet Mohammed outside an Arizona Mosque on Friday in a provocative protest that was denounced by counterprotesters shouting “Go home, Nazis,” weeks after an anti-Muslim event in Texas came under attack by two gunmen.
The anti-Muslim event outside the Islamic Community Center of Phoenix was organized by an Iraq war veteran who posted photos of himself online wearing a T-shirt with a crude slogan denigrating Islam and waving the U.S. flag.
As the event got under way, demonstrators on both sides screamed obscenities at each other as police in riot gear swiftly separated the two groups, each with about 250 people, using police tape and barricades.
“This is in response to the recent attack in Texas,” organizer Jon Ritzheimer wrote on his Facebook page announcing the event at a mosque targeted in part because the two Texas gunmen had worshipped there.
Among the anti-Islam protesters, some of whom called Islam a “religion of murderers,” more than a dozen men in military clothing carried semi-automatic weapons. Others waved copies of caricatures of the Prophet Mohammad drawn at the Texas event.