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CAIR: 'No One Should Fear For Their Safety When Attending Their House Of Worship'

People wait outside a mosque in central Christchurch, New Zealand, Friday, March 15, 2019.
People wait outside a mosque in central Christchurch, New Zealand, Friday, March 15, 2019.

Local Muslims are condemning the attack on two New Zealand mosques that left 49 dead and dozens wounded. Karen Dabdoub, executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, says the violence and the hate that inspired it have no place in any country. 

"Just as the Pittsburgh killer attacked Jews at their synagogue, and the Charleston (South Carolina) killer attacked an African-American community in their church, these types of attacks are driven by racial, religious and ethnic hatred, and every elected official has a responsibility to denounce them in the strongest possible terms."

This past October, a gunman entered the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh, killing 11 and injuring seven. In 2015, another gunman entered the basement of an African-American church, killing 9. 

"No one should fear for their safety when attending their house of worship or raising awareness of important issues," she says.

Dabdoub says they are advising local mosques, synagogues, temples and churches to step up security in wake of the attack. She says they're also encouraging people to show solidarity with Muslims.

Dabdoub says the attacks are the result of politicians exploiting divisions. "Whether its separating families through the Muslim ban, taking children away from their parents at America's southern border, or dehumanizing refugees in Europe, politicians who drive these messages encourage the worst among us to commit these acts of horrific violence."

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