Vandals Paint Crosses at Vienna's Muslim Cemetery

December 1, 2006

Source: The San Diego Union-Tribune

Wire Service: Reuters

VIENNA – Vandals painted 23 large black crosses on a wall inside Vienna's first Muslim cemetery, officials said on Friday.

The desecration was discovered by a state television crew filming construction work at the cemetery, due to be opened in mid-2007 in the Austrian capital, Islamic Community spokeswoman Carla Amina Baghajati said.

It was the second reported incident of religious intolerance in Vienna in a week. A Jewish community school was smashed up in the pre-dawn hours of last Sunday by a crowbar-wielding man, who was arrested at the scene. No one was hurt.

Baghajati said it was also not the first time the cemetery project had been vandalised. Several months ago, arsonists damaged part of the visitors' hall, which delayed construction.