Muslim Advocates Statement on FBI Arrest of White Nationalists Threatening Virginia

White Nationalist Violence is an International Threat and the Government Must Treat it Like One

WASHINGTON, DC — Today, the FBI arrested three white nationalists who threatened to carry out violence in Richmond, Virginia on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. One of the men arrested was a top recruiter for a white nationalist group who unlawfully crossed into the U.S. from Canada. The following is a statement from Farhana Khera, executive director of Muslim Advocates:

“Today’s arrests highlight the fact that international white nationalist violence is the biggest threat to our safety. At home and abroad, people continue to be gunned down or threatened at their houses of worship and other public spaces by white nationalists motivated by hatred against people of color, people of different faiths and immigrants. But for far too long, the U.S. government has ignored or willfully downplayed this dire threat.

Hate in all its forms must be stopped. Unfortunately, the white nationalist hate that exists across borders and has inspired violence in Charleston, Christchurch, Poway, El Paso and now potentially in Richmond is not being treated as a priority.

It is long past time for the FBI and other law enforcement entities to use the myriad options that are already in their toolbox to prevent white nationalists from carrying out these serious threats and acts of violence. We’re grateful that these men were caught but if an ISIS-inspired hate actor was arrested after they unlawfully crossed the border and threatened a state capitol, we know that law enforcement, the president, Congress and the media would be having a very different conversation.”

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Muslim Advocates is a national civil rights organization working in the courts, in the halls of power and in communities to halt bigotry in its tracks. We ensure that American Muslims have a seat at the table with expert representation so that all Americans may live free from hate and discrimination.