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A Man Allegedly Attacked Worshippers In An Ontario Mosque With Bear Spray & A Hatchet

Police are calling it a "a hate-motivated incident."

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A Peel police car. Right: The Dar Al-Tawheed Islamic Centre in Mississauga.

A Peel police car. Right: The Dar Al-Tawheed Islamic Centre in Mississauga.

A man is facing multiple charges after worshippers at the Dar Al-Tawheed Islamic Centre in Mississauga, Ontario, were attacked with bear spray in what police say was a "hate-motivated incident."

In a report on Saturday, March 19, Peel Regional Police confirmed that at around 7 a.m., officers responded to calls about an assault at the mosque in the area of McAdam Road and Matheson Boulevard in Mississauga.

It's alleged that a man walked into the Dar Al-Tawheed Islamic Centre and "discharged bear spray towards the members of the mosque while brandishing a hatchet," which is similar to an ax.

Worshippers at the mosque were able to "subdue" the man until officers arrived, police say, although some members received minor injuries as a result of the bear spray.

The report from Peel police says what happened is believed to be "a hate-motivated incident."

A 24-year-old Mississauga man named Mohammad Moiz Omar now faces multiple charges, including assault with a weapon, administering a noxious substance with intent to endanger life or cause bodily harm and possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose.

He also faces charges for uttering a threat to cause death or bodily harm, carrying a concealed weapon and mischief to religious property.

Several hours later, per CBC News, the mosque's imam, Ibrahim Hindy, tweeted about the attack. He said an individual entered wielding an ax and carrying "other sharp edged weapons."

"Our community will never be broken and we refuse to be intimidated," he added.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau described the attack as "incredibly disturbing."

He added, "I strongly condemn this violence — which has no place in Canada — and I'm keeping the community in my thoughts today. I also want to applaud the courage of those who were there this morning."

Ontario Premier Doug Ford also spoke out about what happened, tweeting, "I am incredibly grateful for their heroism, and my heart goes out to the Dar Al-Tawheed Islamic Centre community who were attacked this morning."

He added, "There is NO place in our province for such evil and hateful acts. We must ensure those responsible are brought to justice."

Police say Omar was held for a bail hearing and appeared before the Ontario Court of Justice in Brampton.

This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.

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