NEW YORK – Two Muslim teenagers were viciously beaten outside a Brooklyn mosque on Sunday morning, according to a rights group, which confirmed the attack and demanded that police investigate the incident as a “bias” attack.
Mosque director Mohamed Bahe said the assailant screamed, “You fucking terrorists,” at the 16 and 17-year-old victims during the attack, which took place at 1:18 am outside the Muslim Community Center of Brooklyn in Sunset Park, The Independent reported on Monday.
The attack was the third recent incident in which American Muslims had been targeted over the weekend. A law enforcement source said investigators had ruled out the incident as a bias crime.
The New York chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR, said in a statement that a 16-year-old boy was attacked outside Brooklyn’s Muslim Community Center as he took a break from prayers.
“We had two volunteers, and they saw a suspicious car parked outside of our entrance,“ Bahe told the outlet, describing the surveillance video. “They looked at the car, trying to figure out who’s inside. They saw a woman and they asked if she needed help. Then all of a sudden a guy comes across running from the street and punches him and knocks him down. He was stomping him and kicking him.“
The attack happened during nightly Ramadan prayers, and members inside the mosque heard the commotion and ran to help the young boys, causing the assailant to flee.
Bahe said that he has repeatedly asked for more protection from the New York Police Department with little to no success.
The attack comes amid a wave of anti-Muslim violence across the states. Earlier, a Muslim doctor was shot and stabbed on Saturday outside a mosque in Houston. The same day, another attack was reported outside the Forte Piece Islamic Center that left one victim beaten and bloodied.