President Joe Biden said he was “shocked and sickened” to learn about the murder in the US of a 6-year-old Palestinian-American boy and the wounding of his mother in an alleged hate crime inspired by the Israel-Hamas conflict.
(Bloomberg) — President Joe Biden said he was “shocked and sickened” to learn about the murder in the US of a 6-year-old Palestinian-American boy and the wounding of his mother in an alleged hate crime inspired by the Israel-Hamas conflict.
Police allege that Joseph Czuba, 71, repeatedly stabbed the Muslim family, who were his tenants, in a Saturday attack in the southwest Chicago suburbs.
Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker also condemned the attack against Wadea Al-Fayoume and his mother Hanaan Shahin.
“To take a six-year-old child’s life in the name of bigotry is nothing short of evil,” Pritzker said.
Biden met with law enforcement and national security officials Friday to discuss steps the federal government was taking to safeguard Jewish and Muslim communities.
Tensions have increased in major US cities, including New York and Chicago, after Hamas — designated a terrorist organization by the US and European Union — killed at least 1,300 Israelis in an attack. Palestinian officials have said Israel airstrikes have killed more than 2,650 people in Gaza.
On Monday, the FBI released annual statistics on hate crimes noting that antisemitic hate crimes rose 25% between 2021 and 2022, and that Muslim Americans were overrepresented among victims.
“To those Americans worried about violence at home, as a result of the evil acts of terror perpetrated by Hamas in Israel, we see you. We hear you,” Biden said in a statement. “I have asked members of my team, including Homeland Security Secretary Mayorkas and Attorney General Garland, to prioritize the prevention and disruption of any emerging threats that could harm Jewish, Muslim, Arab American, or any other communities during this time.”
(Updates with FBI statistics in final two paragraphs)
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