Raleigh, N.C. — Several prominent Muslim-American groups released statements Friday condemning the Boston marathon bombings as the world learned the two suspects were natives of Chechnya, a predominantly Muslim region.
The city of Boston remained on lockdown Friday afternoon while authorities conducted a massive manhunt for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the younger brother of Tamerlan Tsarnaev, who was killed in an overnight shootout with police. The brothers are believed to be responsible for two bombs that exploded Monday near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, killing three people and injuries more than 170.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations, the nation’s largest civil liberties and advocacy organization for Muslims, joined other American Muslim leaders for a noon news conference in Washington, D.C., to offer reaction to the latest information in the case.
CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad condemned the attack, praised law enforcement for their work and offered condolences to victims.
"While we are outraged at the terrorists, we have been inspired by the unity of Americans of all backgrounds. We are a resilient people. Now that we know the identity of the perpetrators, this unity is ever more important," Awad said.
"We will show the terrorists that their plan to sow division and distrust has failed. People of goodwill are not afraid. America will stay united. We will not turn on each other in the acts of false vengeance we have witnessed after other tragedies in the past," he said.
Following the attack, CAIR issued a call for prayers and blood donations.
The Muslim American Public Affairs Council, a statewide inter-faith group based in Raleigh, also issued a statement Friday.
The group “strongly condems terror, all sorts of violence and the barbaric attack and the killing of innocent marathon runners, civilians and our brave law enforcement personnel in Boston and everywhere.
“MAPAC and its members pray for the victims and stand in support of their families and of the law enforcement organizations in Boston and in USA.”