Muslims in New Hampshire pray for long-stalled mosque’s opening

Source: Boston Globe

MANCHESTER, N.H. — From a distance, it appears an elegant structure. It sits, unfinished, on a grassy hillside at the edge of town, a bold octagonal statement overlooking lush green mountains that was supposed to have been the state’s first permanent mosque.

But come a little closer, and the scars are visible. Windows have been broken by vandals. Graffiti mars the half-built entrance. Construction has inched along for so long — more than a decade — that some of the work inside is failing and needs to be replaced. Surveillance cameras and fencing keep trespassers at bay, but they can’t stop the rocks that are regularly hurled over the fence.

Painful words are also being flung its way.

“The Islamic Society of New Hampshire is a terrorist safe haven . . . and there is a strong likelihood violent jihadist activity will be conducted by ‘sleeper terrorists’ attending this particular mosque,” Greg Salts, a former state legislator, said before the Board of Aldermen on a sweltering night in August, reading from a report by a retired federal agent. “The mosque should be closed down immediately.”

 

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