(ATLANTA, GA – 3/17/2021) – The Georgia chapter (CAIR-Georgia) and national office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today expressed strong solidarity with the Asian-American community after mass shootings at three different businesses in the Atlanta area took the lives of eight people. At least six of the victims are reported to be Asian and seven of the eight victims are women.
In a statement, CAIR also called for a full hate crime investigation into the shooting, which occurred amid a rise in bias crimes targeting Asian-Americans since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
CAIR-Georgia Executive Director Abdullah Jaber said in a statement today:
“The Georgia Muslim community mourns the senseless deaths of our Asian-American sisters and brothers. We extend our condolences to the families of the victims and the entire Asian-American community inside and outside of Georgia.
“Although we still need to learn more about how and why these attacks happened, hate and animosity against communities of color, particularly targeting women and the elderly is not new. CAIR-Georgia will extend any help and support needed in this moment and continue to stand against hate and bigotry in all its ugly forms.”
In a statement, CAIR-Georgia Legal and Policy Director Murtaza Khwaja said:
“The hate against the Asian-American community has and continues to be stoked by the incendiary tenor of the racist rhetoric of some elected officials. From pejoratively dubbing the coronavirus the ‘China virus’ to the xenophobic immigration policies of yesterday and today, women, lower income families, and people of color continue to be the primary victims. Yesterday’s tragedy must be investigated for what it appears to be, a hate crime.”
Over the past year, CAIR has repeatedly spoken out against anti-Asian hate crime attacks that have taken place across the nation amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a statement, CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad said:
“We strongly condemn these horrific shootings and express our unwavering solidarity with our Asian-American neighbors who have been repeatedly targeted by hateful attacks in recent months and years. It is long past time for all public officials to confront the vile racism and irrational bigotry that is spreading like wildfire across our nation.”
The American Muslim community and CAIR stand in solidarity with all those challenging anti-Black racism, xenophobia, Islamophobia, anti-Semitism, white supremacy, and all other forms of bigotry.
CAIR-Georgia is part of is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, protect civil rights, promote justice, and empower American Muslims.
La misión de CAIR es proteger las libertades civiles, mejorar la comprensión del Islam, promover la justicia, y empoderar a los musulmanes en los Estados Unidos.
CONTACT: Executive Director Abdullah Jaber, 678-631-9697, [email protected]; Communications and Outreach Director Azka Mahmood, 678-653-5822, [email protected]. CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, [email protected]