The FBI itself has questioned American Muslims in at least eight states during the days leading up to the presidential elections.
Donald Trump's presidential campaign has been characterized by anti-Muslim rhetoric, as many American Muslims have been bullied and discriminated against everywhere from schools to airplanes. News of the FBI's actions adds to the American Muslim communities growing concern about Islamophobia in the United States.
The interrogations of Muslims were meant to gather information about a possible pre-election terrorist attack, with several questions specific to al-Qaeda.
Hassan Shibly, a lawyer and executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), said his clients were asked eight questions, three of which had to do with al-Qaeda, according to the Washington Post.
They were asked whether they knew the al-Qaeda leaders who were killed in U.S. military strikes last month –who US officials believe were connected to the plot. They were also asked if they knew someone who was plotting to hurt Americans.
“The FBI actions ... to conduct a sweep of American Muslim leaders the weekend before the election is completely outrageous and ... borderline unconstitutional,” Shibly told The Washington Post.
“That’s the equivalent of the FBI visiting churchgoing Christians because someone overseas was threatening to blow up an abortion clinic. It’s that preposterous and outrageous.”
CAIR has taken a lead role in informing American Muslim citizens of their basic rights and how to proceed with the interrogations.
“CAIR is urging anyone contacted by a law enforcement agency to consult advice offered in its ‘Know Your Rights and Responsibilities as an American Muslim’ pocket guide, which includes a section called ‘Know Your Rights If Law Enforcement Contacts You,'” the organization wrote on its Facebook page.
More than 70 Muslims have been questioned by federal agents
Many were pointing fingers to the FBI for questioning the wrong people
"Know your rights"
A basic guide:
Al hamdillah ... everything is pinned on Muslims
Even Clinton was an FBI target ...
In a report released by CAIR earlier this year, in collaboration with Berkeley, the organization revealed that over $200 million was spent in five years encouraging fear and hatred towards Muslims, making Islamophobia a multi-million dollar industry in the U.S.