Mosque Director Says He Didn’t Know Ohio State Attacker - Higher Education

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Mosque Director Says He Didn’t Know Ohio State Attacker

by Associated Press

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The director of a mosque attended by the Ohio State attacker says numerous programs are in place to help youth and prevent self-radicalization.

Horsed Noah says he wasn’t familiar with Abdul Razak Ali Artan, the OSU student born in Somalia who police say carried out the car-and-knife rampage that left 11 people hurt Monday morning.

Noah says thousands can attend services on busy days at the mosque on Columbus’ west side.

The mosque just celebrated its second anniversary and serves mostly Muslims from Somalia and other East African countries, many of whom live nearby.

Noah mentors youth at the mosque, which also offers “Meet a Muslim” programs and helps Somali parents learn to communicate with their children, especially as they assimilate faster to life in America.

A law enforcement official says Artan moved to the U.S. with his family from Pakistan as refugees in 2014.

The official briefed on the investigation wasn’t authorized to publicly disclose details of the case and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity. The official says Artan is originally from Somalia but lived in Pakistan from 2007 until 2014.

It’s not uncommon for refugees to flee their home country to live elsewhere before permanently resettling in another country.

Authorities say Artan plowed a car into pedestrians on campus and then began stabbing people with a knife Monday morning. Eleven people were injured.

A police officer fatally shot Artan within a minute of the attack.

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