Muslims asked to steer clear of downtown Indy during protest

INDIANAPOLIS – Flyers were posted around Indy asking the Muslim community to stay away from downtown in preparation for an anti-Muslim march on Saturday

Though the sign reads in bold red letters, “Attention all Muslims, avoid the downtown area,” Indianapolis police said they do not expect any major safety concerns.

“There is no known credible threat to anyone,” said Phil Burton with IMPD. “We encourage them to come downtown and be a part of the festivities that we have going on downtown this weekend. We will have a large number of officers to ensure everyone's safety."

Many in the Muslim community said they do not want to cause conflict.

"We are asking Muslims not to counter demonstrate or even be in that area,” said Razi Nalim, president of the Muslim Alliance of Indiana. “We don't know how many people are going to be marching there."

The flyers weren’t the only advertisements targeting the community.

Faith leaders came together Friday to condemn the anti-Muslim billboard that went on display earlier this week near I-465.

The billboard was created by a Virginia-based company and caused lots of controversy. It featured the words "The Perfect Man" – apparently in reference to the founder of Islam, the Prophet Muhammad – followed by a list of attributes including "rapist" and "slave owner."

The Center for Interfaith Cooperation met with reporters to share their thoughts on the billboard and to promise to stand by the Muslim community.


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