The Connecticut chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations is offering a $10,000 reward following a fire at a New Haven mosque.
A two-alarm fire broke out at the Diyanet Mosque Sunday afternoon in New Haven’s Quinnipiac Meadows neighborhood. The city’s fire chief says the fire appears to be arson.
Tark Aouadi is the executive director of the Connecticut chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.
“We’re trying to build an incentive to bring these people to justice, those people who decided during the holy month of Ramadan to burn down a mosque and impact the community.”
State and federal authorities have opened a criminal investigation into the fire.
The mosque’s president says area churches have offered his congregation a place to hold services. An online fundraiser for the mosque has raised more than $50,000.
“The mosque is ready to accept help from everyone. Everybody in the entire faith-based community is supporting them. And the mosque is happy to be among friends and allies that come to their support,” said Aouadi.
Meanwhile, Connecticut legislative have a bipartisan response to the suspected arson.
Senate President Martin Looney says they propose that $5 million in state bond money be used to create a fund to help houses of worship upgrade their security.
“The advocates believe that that would be a sufficient amount, or at least a sufficient beginning, using an application process similar to what was done for the school security projects.”
The state legislature created a similar fund to help municipalities upgrade school security after the 2012 Sandy Hook School shooting.