ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV.com) – Three St. Louis area residents were indicted on terrorism charges Friday and the case has left local Bosnians and Muslims facing potential backlash for the actions of individuals in their ethnic and religious groups.
The St. Louis area suspects, Ramiz Hodzic, Sedina Hodzic and Armin Harcevic were all originally from Bosnia but were legally residing in the United States when they allegedly aided Al Qaida and ISIS by providing monetary and financial support.
Both the Islamic Foundation of St. Louis and St. Louis Bosnians, Inc. groups have strongly condemned the actions of the Hodzics and Harcevic.
“We felt compelled to come out and say this is not what Islam stands for, this is not what the community stands for,” said Ghazaka Hayat of the Islamic Foundation of St. Louis.
Local Muslims have faced the challenges of public opinion since the 9/11 terror attacks and want to deflect possible repercussions away from the larger Muslim and Bosnian community.
By reminding the public that the alleged acts of the Hodzics and Harcevic are not a reflection on the greater Muslim population of the area, locals Muslims groups hope to avoid conflict or adverse reactions if the prosecution in the case occurs in St. Louis.