Interfaith leaders promote peace and unity following colleyville hostage situation
Many eyes watched as the situation unfolded in Colleyville Saturday night, including Mansfield Mayor, Michael Evans.
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“Mansfield was praying as a collective in that regard, hoping that no one would be injured,” said Reverend Dr. Michael A. Evans, Sr.
Evans is also the longtime pastor of the historic Bethlehem Baptist Church.
“The demonstration of unity is important. Working together, we know, helps everybody,” said Evans
A spokesman for the Islamic Association of North Texas said it’s offering emotional and spiritual support.
“We prayed with our interfaith partners for the safe release of all the hostages," said Khalid Hamideh with the Islamic Association of North Texas. "We were so relieved when they were released unharmed."
The regional director for the American Jewish Committee said the situation has only strengthened their connection, NBC reported.
“When there were times of stress, I have found that it is invariably our friends and partners in the Muslim community, and the Latino community in the AAPI community who are the quickest to speak up and say we are we with you,” said Joel Schwitzer, Regional Director for the American Jewish Committee.
Different faiths pledged their support for a community that needs it the most.
Security has increased at places of worship across North Texas. The Mayor of Mansfield said Mansfield police have stepped up patrols in the wake of the attack.
The Islamic Association of North Texas says it’s increased security at mosques, Islamic schools, and even daycares.
The man who held four people hostage at a Texas synagogue was identified by US authorities as a British citizen Sunday, while UK police later arrested two teenagers over an attack that the US President called an "act of terror."
The man who held four people hostage at a Texas synagogue was identified by US authorities as a British citizen Sunday while UK police later arrested two teens over an attack that US President Joe Biden called an "act of terror."
The captor, who died in the 10-hour siege in the small town of Colleyville on Saturday, was named by the FBI as 44-year-old Malik Faisal Akram.
Hours later, Britain's counter-terrorism police arrested two people and were questioning them in connection with the incident.
"Two teenagers were detained in South Manchester this evening. They remain in custody," the Greater Manchester Police said in a statement.
The FBI's field office in Dallas had earlier said there was "no indication" that anyone else was involved in the attack on the Congregation Beth Israel synagogue.
The four hostages -- including a local rabbi, Charlie Cytron-Walker -- were all freed unharmed Saturday night, prompting relief in the United States, where the Jewish community and Biden renewed calls to fight anti-Semitism.
A man identifying himself as Akram's brother Gulbar said in a Facebook post that the suspect had suffered from mental health problems.
Joe Biden declined to speculate on the motive but appeared to confirm reports that the hostage-taker was seeking the release of convicted terrorist Aafia Siddiqui, a Pakistani neuroscientist known as "Lady Al-Qaeda.