French Mosque Vandalized, Daubed with Swastikas

April 16 — STRASBOURG, France (Reuters) – Vandals have burned the entrance to a mosque in eastern France and daubed swastikas on the walls, police said on Friday.

A rubbish bin outside the mosque was set on fire in the early hours of Thursday and the flames damaged the entrance to the building in the town of Haguenau, just north of Strasbourg.

Two swastikas and a Christian cross were also daubed on the mosque’s walls.

Police did not know who was responsible for the attack.

France is trying to ease tensions with its Muslim and Jewish communities, the largest minorities of their kind in Europe. The country is home to five million Muslims and 600,000 Jews.

Last month, separate attacks badly damaged a mosque and a Muslim prayer center in the southeastern town of Annecy.

France is also struggling against a resurgence of anti-Semitic violence, much of it believed to have been committed by Muslim youths angry about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and has set up special task forces to react quickly to such attacks.

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Reuters, USA
Apr. 16, 2004

Religion News Blog posted this on Friday April 16, 2004.
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