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Vienna mosque defaced by graffiti

Staff reporter · 9 Jan 2015, 10:52

Published: 09 Jan 2015 10:16 GMT+01:00
Updated: 09 Jan 2015 10:52 GMT+01:00

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Police were called to investigate the incident on Thursday morning, when the faithful turned up for their morning prayers.  

The graffiti next to the door of the Tuna mosque at the corner of Adamgasse and Krieglergasse said "Paris! Islam = shit out". 

A mosque official said that he saw the graffiti, and reported the incident to police.  He added that the act was most likely motivated by the attack in Paris, in his opinion.

He also said that Islamophobia was increasing in Austria, with recent incidents including pig parts being left in front of mosques, and attacks on women wearing headscarves.

“They disturb us too,” he added. “How can we be sure they're not going to harm us while we're praying at nights?”

During the last six months in Austria, a pig's head was left at the construction area of the Eyüp Sultan Islamic High School, a Nazi symbol was scrawled on another mosque building in the town of Telfs and numerous women wearing headscarves have been verbally and physically attacked.

Story continues below…

"We condemn the graffiti attack on our unity in the strongest possible terms. It was on the basis of the attack in Paris that racist graffiti was written on the wall of the mosque," the sponsoring organization of the Tuna mosque wrote in the Austrian edition of the Turkish newspaper Zaman.

"The Viennese Islamic Federation has criticized the events in Paris and stresses that this can not be reconciled with Islam. In this context, we want to reiterate that we are against any violence that disrupts social unity and communion", it added.

The group has received threatening phone calls, an official said on Thursday. However, the Islamic Religious Community in Austria (IGGiÖ) has so far not requested special police protection for their facilities and representatives after the attacks in France. 
Enhanced surveillance of mosques had also not been requested. "We hope it will not be necessary," the group said.

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Staff reporter (news@thelocal.com)

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