Canada police probe anti-Muslim incident at Quebec mosque

Montreal (AFP) –


Quebec police are investigating who sent a a desecrated Koran to a Quebec mosque where a white supremacist killed six people in a shooting in January, a police spokesman said Wednesday.

The package containing the Koran and a message of hate was delivered by mail on Friday to the Islamic Cultural Center of Quebec in the city's Sainte-Foy neighborhood.

The incident occurred two days before a referendum on a proposed Muslim cemetery in a small town outside the city, but was not publicly disclosed to avoid influencing the outcome of the vote.

The proposed cemetery was rejected Sunday by a vote of 19 to 16.

A police patrol was dispatched to the mosque to keep the peace after the package arrived, Quebec police spokesman David Poitras said.

"The investigators are in continuous communication with mosque officials to identify the whereabouts of the people who sent the package and to determine whether a crime was committed," he said.

Quebec Prime Minister Philippe Couillard condemned the incident as a "cowardly act" targeting Quebec's Muslims. "Nobody deserves to be treated like this," he said.

A Canadian student with white supremacist views opened fire January 29 on worshippers at evening prayer in the mosque, killing six.

Last year, the head of a pig was left on the grounds of the mosque, an incident that has yet to be resolved, said Poitras.