El Paso Islamic Center Receives Message Threatening Violence

April 20, 2004

Source: The El Paso Times


On April 20, 2004 The El Paso Times reported, "The FBI is investigating an e-mail that threatened to destroy the Islamic Center of El Paso if hostages in Iraq are not released, center officials said Monday. The threat is the first reported case of anti-Muslim backlash targeting the El Paso mosque since 1995... The e-mail was sent Sunday under the name 'freedom lover' and stated that if hostages held by Iraqi insurgents weren't freed within three days the 'center will become the center of death and destruction. ... The will of the people has been portrayed to you and your satan worshipping faith,'according to a news release by the Council on American-Islamic Relations. The threat was discovered Monday morning by a secretary at the center. Police increased patrols near the center, located just north of Downtown, officials said. The threat is the latest in recent anti-Muslim incidents in Texas. An arsonist was arrested earlier this month in San Antonio after a series of fires targeting Muslim-owned businesses. And in March, vandals scrawled racist graffiti in a mosque in Lubbock."