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Police look into mosque threats

Aug 18 2012

Victoria police are investigating provocative, anti-Muslim comments posted on the I Love Downtown Victoria Facebook page, suggesting the new Masjid AlIman Mosque on Quadra Street be blasted with a rocket launcher.

The comments appear to have been posted late Thursday afternoon by Facebook user Dan Speed.

Speed's profile page states his work and education include the Canadian Coast Guard (security), Canadian Forces, Department of National Defence, Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry, Canadian Airborne Regiment, Sauder School of Business and Stelly's Secondary School.

On Friday, Victoria police Sgt. Barrie Cockle confirmed that a file has been opened.

Speed could not be reached for comment.

The online exchange includes 47 likes and comments by about 27 Facebook users, who seem to be delighted by the new building.

Speed's first comment is: "That's not good."

Another user asks him why it's not good.

"Blast it with an 84mm Carl Gustaf," Speed replies. "Noise pollution for that neighbourhood for one. He yaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhh. 5 times a day I believe."

Subsequent postings accuse Speed of ignorance, hate and bigotry. One posting recalls the shootings in the Sikh temple in the U.S.

"I hope you apply the same value to churches with the bells and advocate the same solution, Mr. Speed," says Facebook user Dan Poulter.

Facebook user Abdullah Almalki writes he used to pray in the old building.

"The two buildings were very small for us, because there are a lot of Muslims who want to pray," writes Almalki. "Actually, I want to thank the government of Canada who accepted to build a mosque in Victoria. In another hand, I want to thank people who welcomed us as humans, the same they are."

He tells Speed to be respectful and invites him to take a look at the mosque some day.

"Mr. Speed, first you have to respect others even if they have a different culture. Second, we need a mosque as Christian people need Church, all right!! Also what the noise pollution you are talking about!! a call that you talk about will not go beyond the Mosque's walls," writes Almalki.

It is all about love, writes Kiah Lafleur.

"People need and have a right to come together," reads her post. "Speed so sorry but I think you are out#ered here. I think it is time to educate yourself."

ldickson@timescolonist.com

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