The Council on American-Islamic Relations Philadelphia chapter thinks recent statements by GOP presidential frontrunner Donald Trump may be connected to the discovery of a severed pig's head outside a Philly mosque early Monday.
"This vandalism of a sacred space comes in the midst of an election cycle which has given us the most public attack on an American minority in living memory," said CAIR-Philadelphia Executive Director Jacob Bender in a statement. "Attacks upon American Muslims should be, and must be, the responsibility of all Americans to condemn."
CAIR's statement implied the incident may be tied to Trump's rhetoric on Muslims in the U.S.
"This incident may be tied to a recent policy statement by leading GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump, who called for a 'total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States,'" an email from CAIR said. "Trump has also advocated the closure of American mosques and recommended special IDs and databases for American Muslims."
Philly police and the FBI are still investigating why the severed pig’s head was left outside a North Philadelphia mosque.
A caretaker told police he found the animal part at about 6 a.m. Monday in front of the Al Aqsa Islamic Society when he came to set up for morning prayer services, NBC 10 reported.
The news outlet added that surveillance footage from outside the 1501 Germantown Ave. building shows a red pickup truck driving past the mosque and someone throwing an object out of its window Sunday night.
Pigs are considered insulting to Muslims who observe halal dietary laws, according to Philly.com.
"Attacks on any religious institution is an attack on all of us," Marwan Kreidie, head of the Arab American Development Corp., who has an office in the building, told Philly.com. "A pig's head doesn't do much. Could the next thing be a pipe bomb?"
The caretaker, identified by Philly.com as Nabil Ibrahim Khalil, said an anonymous caller left a voicemail following last month’s Paris terror attacks calling Allah "a piece of pork s---.'' He was unsure whether the incidents were related, Philly.com said.