Washington (AFP), August 7 – Police in the US state of New Mexico said on Saturday they are investigating the killings of three Muslim men they suspect are linked to a fourth homicide last year.
The Albuquerque Police Department said in a statement that they located the last victim Friday night.
They did not identify him but said he was in his mid-twenties, Muslim and “from South Asia”.
“Investigators believe Friday’s murder may be linked to three recent murders of Muslim men also from South Asia,” the statement said.
Two of the previous victims were Pakistani Muslims, a 27-year-old man whose body was found on August 1 and a 41-year-old man found on July 26.
Detectives are currently investigating whether these killings are linked to the death of a Muslim from Afghanistan who was killed on Nov. 7, 2021, outside the business he ran with his brother in Albuquerque, the statement said.
Police urged anyone with information to call a tip line and said the FBI was assisting in the investigation.
New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham expressed outrage at the attacks and solidarity with the southwestern state’s Muslim community.
“The targeted killings of Muslim residents of Albuquerque are deeply irritating and completely intolerable,” Lujan Grisham tweeted.
She said she was sending additional state troopers to Albuquerque to help with the investigation.
“We will continue to do whatever we can to support the Muslim community in Albuquerque and Greater New Mexico,” she said.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), America’s largest Muslim civil rights group, said on Saturday it would offer a $10,000 reward to anyone who provided information leading to the killer’s arrest.
“This tragedy not only affects the Muslim community, but all Americans,” CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad said in a statement.
“We must be united against hatred and violence, regardless of the race, religion or origin of the victims or perpetrators.”