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Arson Suspected At Northland Mosque Under Construction

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Islamic Center of Northland
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Leaders of the Islamic Center of Northland, located near NE barry Road and North Oak Trafficway, discovered burnt interior walls when they arrived at the site for a meeting Saturday morning. Kansas City police are investigating it as an arson.

A possible arson is being investigated at a mosque under construction in Kansas City.

Islamic Center of Northland leaders say they arrived at the site, near Barry road in Kansas City north, for a meeting early Saturday morning and discovered blackened interior walls. There was no serious damage reported. 

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Credit Courtesy - Laeeq Azmat
The fire left little damage to the building. Kansas City police say they found two burned bottles inside.

Kansas City police and a bomb squad responded. Police confirm that two burned bottles were found inside the building. 

Laeeq Azmat, ICN's board secretary, says they've had a good relationship with the Northland community. For the last 13 years they've held services at nearby Hillside Christian church.

Azmat says ICN has so far invested nearly $1.7 million in its new facility. But he says the site, which has been under construction for three years, doesn't bear obvious resemblance to a mosque. 

Still, the incident is discouraging for the Muslim community, especially considering the current political atmosphere in the United States. 

"We live already in fear, all the time. Whenever I leave for work, I always tell my wife to be careful, going to the gas station going to the grocery store, but this will definitely add to our fear," Azmat says. 

Lisa Rodriguez is a reporter for KCUR 89.3. Connect with her on Twitter @larodrig

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