Belfast Telegraph

Muslim community ‘terrified’ after burglars smash mosque windows

Windows and locks were broken during a suspected burglary at the Maryam mosque in Galway.

Shareef Mubashir, caretaker of Ahmadiyya Mosque in Galway surveys the damage (Niall Carson/PA)
Shareef Mubashir, caretaker of Ahmadiyya Mosque in Galway surveys the damage (Niall Carson/PA)

A mosque has been damaged during a burglary in Galway, gardai said.

Windows and locks were broken overnight at the Maryam mosque.

The Ahmadiyya Muslim Association of Ireland said: “The Ahmadiyya Muslim community in Ireland is terrified and deeply saddened by this vandalism and attack on our place of worship and house of peace.”

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The Ahmadiyya Mosque was damaged on Sunday night (Niall Carson/PA)

“It is reported that with extreme sadness that Galway mosque was attacked badly and severely vandalised sometime last night.”

The motive is unclear and the attackers are unknown, and no one was injured in the incident, a spokesman said. Gardai were informed.

The mosque in Monivea Road, on the outskirts of Galway city, was previously targeted two years ago.

Caretaker Shareef Musbashir discovered the damage shortly after 9am on Monday and said CCTV recordings had been taken.

He said windows had been smashed.

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Shareef Mubashir and his son Mahmood with one of the rocks used in the attack (Niall Carson/PA)

“The mosque is damaged very badly, it is upsetting and scary, it feels very bad,” he added.

“Our community is a very peaceful community.”

A Garda statement said: “Gardai are investigating a burglary that occurred in Ballybaan, Co Galway, on July 29 2019.

“A considerable amount of criminal damage was caused to the premises. No arrests have been made and investigations are ongoing.”

The Ahmadiyya Muslim community is a revival movement in Islam.

It describes itself as a peaceful and law-abiding community which is committed to promoting peace and rejects violence and terrorism in any form anywhere in the world.

The community’s motto is “Love for all and hatred for none.”

Catholic Bishop Brendan Kelly said he was dismayed and shocked by the “wilful and malicious” assault on the mosque.

He said: “An attack on a place of worship is an assault on God and an assault on all people of faith.

“We stand in solidarity with our Muslim neighbours. With them, we reject violence, we reject division and we reject hate.”

PA

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