Hamilton, Ontario, police ask for public…
Police have increased patrols in the area of the Hamilton Mosque on the east Mountain while arson, forensic and hate crimes officers continue to probe the attempted fire bombing at the Islamic School of Hamilton which is part of the mosque building.
Speaking to a packed mosque last Friday, the chief told worshippers the attack on the Islamic school was an attack on the entire community.
Mayor Fred Eisenberger, Mountain MPP Sophia Aggelonitis and Hamilton Centre MP David Christopherson also offered strong words of support for the 20,000 member Muslim community in Hamilton.
Yasser Haddara, an associate professor of electrical and computer engineering at McMaster University and an active member of the local Islamic community, said they are grateful the police chief and elected officials came to the mosque. “We think they reacted in a very timely manner and in a very positive manner,” Haddara said. “From what we have seen, it’s not just words, it is action.”
Haddara said the Muslim community is committed to making Hamilton a better place for everyone.
“This is something that flows from our faith and from our commitment to being citizens in Canada,” he said “We have to make a contribution. We have to help make our city a better place to live and make our country a better place to live.”
Prior to hearing from police and elected officials, Muhammad Khattad, the Mullah leading Friday prayers at the mosque, gave a stirring 40- minute address to some 200-300 attendees, where he emphasized that Islam is a religion of peace and a way of life.
“The attack (on the school) will never deter us,” he said. “It will make us strong.”