SHAFAQNA – The local Muslim community spoke out on Saturday after an explosion occurred at a mosque in Minneapolis.
“Hate crimes against any group, not only Muslims, is against all Americans,” said Dr. Ghazala Hayat.
Dr. Hayat is with the Islamic Foundation of Greater Saint Louis and estimates nearly 100,000 Muslims live in our community.
She’s shocked and saddened learning detail after detail concerning the Minneapolis-area mosque explosion.
“Unfortunately, for different reasons, this is just getting worse. Our community is seeing these things all over the country in different ways, added Dr. Hayat.
Federal investigators have not determined the blast was part of a hate crime.
Muhammad Zahoors owns a business in Ballwin. He’s convinced the explosion is the result of a hate crime and takes issue with the people behind it.
“This is a place of worship. We are Christians, Jews or whatever. We all go to pray and worship one God. I feel, when these places are blown up, they are people who are not educated enough,” said Zahoors.
Abbas Ali is an advocate for the Islamic religion.
“A lot of times, people don’t know what Islam is and what kind of context goes into that religion,” said Ali.
He believes most don’t realize Islam is the religion of peace.
“For example, I am a Muslim and also give charity. This morning, we woke up and went to the Florissant and Ferguson area to give out 350 backpacks to the homeless and needy kids there. Not a lot of people know that,” added Ali.