Arson attacks on Australian churches make headlines when one turns out to be a Mosque


PHOTO: The mosque’s Imam and his family were in a nearby home but unharmed. (Supplied: Matthew Richards)

I didn’t know that there had been a number of arson attacks on churches in Australia until the latest target turned out to be a Mosque. Predictably when it is a Mosque that gets burnt down all the accusations of Islamophobia and hate crime come out to play. The fact that it was only one in a series of arson attacks on churches and was inside a building that looks like a traditional church ( not a mosque) raises more questions than answers. Who was the real target?

Victoria Police are investigating a suspicious fire that has destroyed Geelong’s main mosque, but authorities believe the attack may actually be targeting churches, not Islam.

Key points:

  • Fire may be part of spate of attacks on Christian churches, police say
  • Bluestone mosque was a former Anglican church
  • Imam says mosque has never received threats
  • Neighbours heard a loud bang before blaze

Inspector Graham Banks from Victoria Police said he did not believe someone had deliberately targeted the mosque, which is housed in a former Uniting church.

“This is one of a series of fires against places of worship in the Geelong area. There’s been four since October last year,” he said.

“It is clearly not what people might envisage a mosque might look like.”

He said the series of fires had been targeting Christian-based churches.

…In April, a suspicious fire gutted a 103-year-old Presbyterian church in Geelong West and it had to be knocked down.

In December, two churches were set alight within half and hour of each other in Norlane.

Imam Mohammad Ramzan, his wife and three children were sleeping in an adjacent home and escaped unharmed.He told 774 ABC Melbourne he never expected such a “calamity” to happen at the mosque.

“We’ve never had any trouble, any issue, any problem; any tension, even. Rather, we’ve received very complementing and love-based compliments from the people,” he said.

“The mosque was known for peace, unity, love, tolerance. It was a real symbol for keeping together the neighbourhood and community.

“We will rebuild. Whether it was accidental or done on purpose it will not shake our determination.

“We will not play into the hand of anyone who has such bad intention.”

Imam Ramzan said he had never received any threats or negative feedback about the mosque.

…Mohommad worshipped at the mosque and said there had not been any trouble during the mosque’s 23-year history.

“It’s a house of serenity, peace and shouldn’t be treated like this,” he said.

“I was in disbelief and shock. I would never have thought this would happen to this mosque. I don’t understand why people do these things.”


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  • Tiger

    Did the press interview the neighbours next to the other razed churches? How come the muslim gets interviewed and not anyone else? I get the impression the media wet themselves when Allah gets offended and race out to interview the adherents.
    I can tell you this, folk at my work are getting tired of the continuous stream of “positive” associations that are made when the “religion of pieces” are reported upon. Considering they are minority, they are over represented in the news, and not because they are over-represented in the do-good category either.
    You may find that the fires at the other churches are reported on in the local newsletters, deemed not clickbaitable enough for “national” news. I can see journalism 101 becoming more dissociated from the real world.

    • Tiger

      Attached this before – you’d think the world was turning “muslim.” I realise this is their idea, but the media seem to shove it down your throat and it does not taste nice. Only consolation is that fewer newspapers are being read.

      • rexabus

        They believe in the parallel Australia. The one that doesn’t have white people (or aborigines for that matter) in its history books. A clean sweeper everything predating the 1st mosque planted on the fertile ground of Australian shores. Forget waltzing Matilda, Richie benaud, afl, beer etc when they’ve wrested ideological power from the current occupants of the land

        • kereru

          They claim the first mosque was built by Afghan camel drivers, and is now just a pile of rocks in the outback. But that particular pile of rocks entitles Islam to claim Australia for themselves.

  • Annoyed

    I would also be interested in finding out which sect of Islam the Mosque belonged to. It’s a pretty good ploy to attack your enemies inside your religion and pretend it was someone outside.

  • Left Right Out

    “Bluestone mosque was a former Anglican church”….. soooooo there is no problem for islam using a former church, I guess the bless it in their own way and that makes it all good…… but for food, you must pay a halal tax…..hmmmmmm

    • kereru

      That’s Islam’s modus operandi. Even the Dome of the Rock was a former Roman Catholic basilica. The Hagia Sophia is another example, originally a cathedral but turned into a mosque when the Ottomans defeated the Byzantines in the 15th century. Add a few towering minarets to show the superiority of Islam and you’re done.

  • Chris Bell

    What a world we live in – we care more for the haters than we do for the hated