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Muslim American students allegedly punched & mocked

A civil rights group is calling on authorities to investigate an incident on the University of Texas, Austin campus as a hate crime.

KVUE reports two men allege they were walking back to campus after praying at a mosque when three others began mocking them in Arabic. The Council on American-Islamic Relations says the students accuse the men of derisively screaming “Allahu Akbar” or God is great at them.

They then say the men began punching them and that one of the attackers reached into his pocket and feigned having a weapon. The students were wearing clothing associated with Muslims at the time of the alleged attack.

“No human being should feel unsafe wearing their traditional clothes in public,” said Shaimaa Zayan of CAIR. “And when this happens in Austin, a city that cherishes cultural diversity, it is even more traumatizing. This alleged attack reopened our wounds from the February stabbing of a Palestinian-American. Investigating these incidents as hate crimes is essential.”

Last month a stabbing on a Palestinian American in Austin landed suspect Bert Baker in jail on a charge of aggravated assault. Police determined the attack on the UT campus rose to the level of a hate crime. However, they say the final determination on whether to elevate charges is up to the district attorney’s office.

“We urge the UT Austin administration to take steps to ensure the safety of Muslim students. There is a disturbing pattern of Islamophobia toward the Muslim student population of the UT campus in Austin,” said Fayyaz Shah, CAIR’s board chair.

AsAmNews is published by the non-profit, Asian American Media Inc. Follow us on FacebookX, InstagramTikTok and YouTube. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to support our efforts to produce diverse content about the AAPI communities. We are supported in part by funding provided by the State of California, administered by the California State Library in partnership with the California Department of Social Services and the California Commission on Asian and Pacific Islander American Affairs as part of the Stop the Hate program. To report a hate incident or hate crime and get support, go to CA vs Hate.


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