Sci-tech

Three arrested, charged in United States mosque bombing

Three arrested, charged in United States mosque bombing

Three Ford County men have been charged with arson in the bombing previous year of a mosque in suburban Minneapolis.

Three men from rural central IL have been arrested on gun charges and a connection with the bombing of a Bloomington mosque in August 2017 and an attempted bombing of an IL women's health clinic in November 2017.

Prosecutors say McWhorter threw a pipe bomb into a mosque in Blooming, Minneapolis on August 5. Hari was arrested as he was traveling to a court appearance in Ford County on unrelated assault charges.

A statement from the USA attorney's office in Springfield, Illinois, says the men also are suspected in the attempted bombing of an abortion clinic. A fourth man was charged with a gun offense, but he was not identified as a suspect in the attack on the mosque or the clinic.

One of the men, Michael B. Hari, 47, described in an April 2017 Chicago Tribune article how he drafted a $10 billion plan to build a wall along the border with Mexico, citing US President Donald Trump's call for such a wall.

"Michael Hari also has a YouTube channel, and people in town tell us that they were planning on rallying a militia together to try to fight the Federal Bureau of Investigation", said reporter Aaron Eades from our news partner, WCIA-TV.

Law enforcement also had received information in December from confidential sources who said Hari possessed guns and bomb-making materials, said the court filing. According to the affidavit, Hari often stays at his parents' home because his home has no running water or electricity. No one was injured, but the explosion caused extensive damage to the Imam's office.

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Hari allegedly told McWhorter's brother when he dropped off the guns, "The police will want to come talk to me; can I keep them here until I speak to them?" said the affidavit.

The incident was similar to the attempted bomb attack at an abortion clinic three months later.

Later Tuesday, the executive director of the Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations said that there were still many questions that need answering.

Hussein tells The Associated Press that Muslims are glad that the suspects are "no longer a threat to our community".

The Islamic center in Bloomington houses not only a mosque, but also a religious school for children.

Minnesota is home to the biggest Somali community outside of east Africa with estimated 57,000 people residing in the Minneapolis area. The mosque's executive director, Mohamed Omar, said the vehicle immediately sped away. The video didn't show the blast itself.


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