Politicians were quick to label an incident that took place at a Mississauga, Ontario mosque as a so-called ‘hate’ crime, despite the attacker being named as Mohammad Moiz Omar by police.
The 24-year-old Mississauga man is accused of attacking mosque congregants during a communal prayer on Saturday.
He’s been charged with assault with a weapon, administering a noxious substance with the intent to endanger life or cause bodily harm, possessing a weapon for dangerous purposes, uttering threats, carrying a hidden weapon, and mischief to religious property since then.
“Peel Regional Police take these incidents very seriously. And 12 division Criminal Investigations Bureau will be continuing this investigation and further charges may follow,” Supt. Rob Higgs said, according to CP24.
Politicians expressed their support for the mosque but avoided mentioning the name of the suspected attacker, cleverly omitting that aspect from their condemnations.
Minister of Public Safety Marco Mendicino tweeted that he was “shocked and appalled to hear of an attack at the Dar Al-Tawheed Islamic Centre in Mississauga, which [Peel Police] are investigating as a hate crime… Now more than ever, we must stand up with all Muslim Canadians against Islamophobia.”
Yesterday Marco visited the mosque to exploit the incident and virtue signal his way to “stand with the Muslim community against hate.”
Ontario NDP leader Andrea Horwath joined in the jumping to conclusions, writing: “In response to an evil, violent act of Islamophobic hate, the Dar Al-Tawheed Islamic Centre community acted courageously to keep folks safe. We all stand with them. But it should never come to this. Everyone deserves to be safe in their community and place of worship.”
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s acknowledgement of the attack did not go so far as to call it Islamophobic, instead calling it “incredibly disturbing.”
Toronto Mayor John Tory said in a statement to CP24 that violence against Muslims or any community in a place of worship is “totally unacceptable.”
“We stand with the Muslim community in Mississauga, Toronto and across Canada in the wake of this assault,” Tory wrote.
“Our work to make sure everyone can pray in peace without fear, threats or violence must continue.”