Police Find No Evidence of Hate Crime in Kiseljak Arson

Police of the Central Bosnia Canton in the Federation entity said that there is no evidence an arson in which the car of a local imam in the town of Kiseljak was burned was ethnically motivated. The imam in a local community in the town with mixed Croat Catholic and Bosniak Muslim population reported that an unknown person broke into his garage on Wednesday evening and set his car on fire.

“We had guests that evening and the attacker waited for them to leave”

According to the police, the evidence found at the arson site didn’t indicate that the attacker on the imam’s property was motivated by ethnic hate. The police released the statement following media reports on growing inter-communal tension in the central Bosnia town, some 40 kilometers west of Sarajevo.

Several suspects provided alibis for the evening of the arson, the police said and urged citizens to report any information that could lead to arrest and to refrain from adding to tension in the town.

“It happened in a matter of minutes. Fortunately I didn’t go to sleep,” the 38-year-old imam told a network.

“We had guests that evening and the attacker waited for them to leave. The children heard the (garage) door banging. The wife opened the window and saw flames coming from the garage. I rushed there in my pajamas and tried to pull the car out from the garage.”

Bosnian Islamic Community condemned the arson.

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