November 14, 2015

Czech Muslims condemn Paris attacks

Center head concerned about retribution, escalation

Brno, Nov 14 (ČTK) — Muneeb Hassan, chairman of the Center of Muslim Communities in the Czech Republic, denounced today the terrorist attacks in Paris and expressed sympathy to the families of the victims and the injured and solidarity with all France.

He said he is afraid of a possible escalation of negative moods towards Muslims in the Czech Republic.

French President Francois Hollande said today the attacks, which claimed more than 120 lives, were carried out by Islamic State.

“Whoever the perpetrator may be, we fully denounce this deed. I cannot find any reason for anyone to think and act like this,” Hassan told the Czech News Agency.

Hassan, a years-long representative of the Muslim community in Brno, south Moravia, said similar terrorist acts have no support in Islam as a religious teaching.

He said the terrorists abuse faith to justify monstrous acts.

“The message of Islam according to the Quaran is a message of compassion destined for all people, not a message of revenge and hatred which extremist from the Al-Qaeda and IS spread through their criminal political ideology and terrorist acts,” the Centre of Muslim Communities said in its afternoon statement.

It said the terrorists want to sow fear and hatred, destabilize Europe and force it to betray the ideals based on democracy, freedom and human rights.

The centre said Europe should firm itself in its belief, but it should not give up its security.

In the past, Muslims in Brno felt negative attitudes of a part of the public after similar events and this may happen now, too, Hassan said.

“There will be minimally verbal attacks,” Hassan said. He said in the past two months already, Muslims in Brno were more frequent targets of verbal attacks.

In the night to Friday, someone poured the Brno mosque with engine oil. In August, unknown perpetrators broke two windows.

“We are looking for the best way of alerting members of the community to be more cautious,” Hassan said.

According to available information, several hundred Muslims live in Brno. Since 1998, Brno has had the first mosque in the Czech Republic.

Michal Hašek, South Moravia Region governor, said the security situation is stable and under control.

The Prague Muslim community has also denounced the terrorist attacks in France.

“The Muslim community expresses deep sorrow for the victims in France that died in a terrorist attack. We resolutely denounce any violence against any human being. We repeat it that these acts have never had anything in common with Islam,” the community said in its press release.

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