A fire that destroyed a building at Houston’s Quba Islamic Institute early Friday morning was set intentionally. This, according to the Houston Chronicle:
Ahsan Zahid, 25, said arson investigators with the Houston Fire Department told him that an accelerant was used in the fire that broke out about 5:30 a.m. at Quba Islamic Institute at 730 FM 1959 near Gulfstream Park.
Zahid, a political science student at the University of Houston, said two working theories are being pursued. The fire was started on purpose to damage the building or it was started by a homeless person who broke in to the building because of the cold.
The fire department, meanwhile, has not confirmed the cause of the fire to reporters.
On its Facebook page, the Quba Islamic Institute posted that “all activites will continue today” at the center:
According to its website, the Quba Islamic Institute holds the first of five daily prayers at 6:15 a.m. this morning–just an hour or so before the fire broke out. Aside from individuals who may have set the fire, no one was inside the building when it started.
Today’s fire in Texas comes on the heels of the killings of three Muslim students in North Carolina Tuesday evening, which is now the subject of an inquiry by federal investigators.