The Council of Canadians Peterborough chapter has spoken out against the arson attack on the Al-Salaam mosque in their community.
On Saturday Nov. 14, Masjid Al-Salaam, the only mosque in Peterborough, was the target of an arson attack. The incident is believed to be related to an anti-Muslim, anti-refugee backlash following the violence in Paris on Nov. 13. The police are investigating the incident in Peterborough as a hate crime.
In a letter to the editor in the Peterborough Examiner, Council of Canadians Peterborough chapter activist Jo Hayward-Haines writes, “At a recent meeting of our local chapter of the Council of Canadians we reflected on our mandate – a better Canada is possible. Our response to the attacks on innocent people in Paris was deepened by the fire-bombing locally of Masjid Al-Salaam, our only mosque. A temple of peace. The Council of Canadians has long recognized how important the work of building a culture of understanding, social justice and environmental responsibility is. We are heartened by the response of Peterborough in support of our Moslem brothers and sisters. It’s a profound demonstration of the power of love over intolerance and hate.”
The support of the community for the mosque has indeed been heartening.
On Nov. 16, the Peterborough Examiner reported that a fundraising campaign to repair the $80,000 in damages to the mosque had raised more than $110,000 in 30 hours.”
The Council of Canadians rejects Islamophobia and racism, disparages at the petitions being circulated calling for a halt to Canada accepting refugees, and opposes Western military intervention in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan which is worsening conditions in the region and contributing to the forced migration of people from these countries to escape violence.