Video: Suspect who threw rock into Mississauga mosque wanted for hate crime

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Published February 1, 2024 at 7:08 pm

Heavy police presence in south Mississauga

Investigators are trying to identify a suspect who threw rocks into a Mississauga mosque in what police are calling a “hate-motivated crime.”

The man threw stones through the windows of the Qasimul Uloom Islamic Centre at 51 Queen St. in Streetsville around 5 a.m. on Jan. 29.

Qasimul Uloom describes itself as “dedicated to transmitting the trust of sacred knowledge to future generations.” It has been active as an organization since 2007. They operate a food pantry which distributes 6,000 pounds of food to more than 150 families every Saturday.

The attack comes on the anniversary of the Quebec City Mosque attack in which Alexandre Bissonnette, then 27, opened fire in a crowded mosque. The 2017 terrorist attack killed six worshippers and injured 19 more.

That this incident occurred on January 29th, when many of us were reflecting on the anniversary of the Quebec City shooting and how best to honour its victims and survivors, serves as a chilling reminder that our mosques are still not safe—that violent Islamophobia is still alive in our neighbourhoods,” wrote the National Coalition of Canadian Muslims.

“We understand the profound impact these incidents have on our community,” Peel Regional Police wrote, “Officers are working closely with the Imam and we have activated our reassurance protocol to ensure any well-being or safety concerns are addressed.”

“The attack against a Mississauga mosque earlier this week – on the National Day of Remembrance of the Quebec City Mosque Attack and Action Against Islamophobia – is cowardly, disturbing, and unacceptable. I condemn it in the strongest terms possible. Islamophobia has no place in any of our communities,” wrote Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Hate crime has been on the rise across Canada over the last few years, particularly in the last few months. Attacks targeting Islamic and Jewish community groups have increased even further since the resumption of hostilities in the Middle East. Toronto Police reported a 45 per cent in hate crime in 2023 compared to the year before.

In March 2022, another Mississauga Mosque experienced an attack when Mohammad Moiz Omar, then 25, attacked the Dar Al-Tawheed Islamic Centre with an axe and bear spray during the dawn prayer.

Police have called for anyone in the area between 2 a.m and 6 a.m. to come forward. Anybody with information can call police at 905-453-3311 ext. 1133 or Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).

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