A flurry of firebombings in the New York borough of Queens have left police promising a full investigation into both the attacks and possible “hate crime” ties to those crimes, with the targets including a Shi’ite mosque and a residence which was used as a Hindu temple.
The mosque appears to have been the primary of the four targets, with two or three Molotov cocktails hurled at the building. The worshipers discovered the fire quickly and put it out before any injuries occurred.
The other attacks all occurred within two miles of the Al-Khoei Islamic Center and within two hours. The other targets included a bodega (the employees were Muslims), the house of a Hindu family (that was also used as a temple) and the house of a Christian family.
The exact motives of the attacks were unclear, and so far there have been no claims of responsibility. Interestingly enough given the nature of the attacks, officials have so far declined to use the term “terrorism” to describe the attacks, though they have at least given some lip-service to the term “hate crime.” The Islamic Center says this is the first time they have been attacked since they opened in 1989.
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