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Islamic Society of Joplin is still moving forward one year after - KOAM TV 7

Islamic Society of Joplin is still moving forward one year after their mosque is destroyed.

Islamic Society of Joplin is still moving forward one year after their mosque is destroyed.

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It was a day members of the Islamic historical society will never forget....

"Well its been some kind of easy, and difficult, and as you see we are now at the temporary place. we don't have a place like we used to have in the past. but we have to carry on our religious obligation." says Imam Lahmuddin.

On August 6, 2012 the mosque that once housed these people was burned to the ground.
The cause was ruled un determined. Earlier in July of that year surveillance video from the mosque shows a man attempting arson on the building. It is not known if the two fires are related...the FBI-- still has an active investigation into the incidents.

FBI Media Relations, Bridget Patton says "it's not just a crime where a building burned down. it's a crime against the community. and again, we want the public to remember that we need their assistance and if someone out there does know something, please contact the FBI or the local law enforcement."

But a year later, the Islamic society is just as strong, thanks to support from the community.

"They all were at the center of the response. and that was amazing. this is the key thing that gave us the support and the determination and the courage to live our lives in this great country and in Joplin." says member Mateen Nagaria

The group has been using the old JB Elephant's Thai Food Restaurant and surrounding suites as their home for prayer before breaking ground on a new mosque down the street. The project could cost upwards of a million dollars. and members say they won't begin building until it can be fully paid for.

"That was our commitment from the beginning after we lost our mosque, and then people gave us support and many people asked us to rebuild in Joplin, so we are committed with that." says Imam Lahmuddin.

While the Islamic community continues to band together, the FBI continues their investigation into last year's fires....and a 50 thousand dollar reward remains for anyone leading investigators to an arrest.

Members of the society started an online donation site to rebuild the mosque. Their goal was 250-thousand dollars. They have surpassed that -- raising over $411,000.

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