Idaho Mosque Plastered with Swastika Stickers; Police Investigate

March 9, 2007

Source: International Herald Tribune

Wire Service: AP

BOISE, Idaho: A few swastika-emblazoned stickers have been left on a mosque and another building in Boise, Idaho, prompting a police investigation, officials said.

The stickers were reported Sunday as children arrived at the Islamic Center of Boise for Sunday school, said Furqan Mehmood, the center's education director.

The stickers were left on a door and other surfaces, apparently on Saturday afternoon, officials said.

Somali refugees who went to the mosque to pray that day noticed them but did not report them; they were unfamiliar with the swastika symbol and assumed they were benign, Mehmood said.

The stickers promoted Combat 18, a loosely organized neo-Nazi group that likely originated in Britain, officials said.

The incident violates Idaho's felony malicious harassment law, said police spokeswoman Lynn Hightower. The stickers peeled off easily, leaving no damage.