LA stands united as hate crimes against Muslims increase after San Bernardino

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Monday, December 14, 2015
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Imam Moustafa Al-Qazwini with the Shia Muslim Council of Southern California and other area leaders stand in solidarity on Sunday, Dec. 13, 2015.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- A special ceremony was held at the Westwood Jewish Center for families of the victims of the San Bernardino terrorist attack.

It was a Hanukkah celebration meant to shine light on the lives lost on Dec. 2.

"The message is light. And we are hoping to push a lot of darkness away the little light. But this little light is a big light because it comes from big hearts," Rabbi Shimon Kashani of the Westwood Jewish Center said.

Earlier Sunday morning, there was another show of solidarity on the steps of Los Angeles City Hall.

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Officials gathered to show the community is united in their stand against terrorism and hate following the deadly San Bernardino massacre.

"On behalf of American-Muslim community, again and again, we condemn these atrocities. We condemn these acts of genocide and acts of terror that took place in San Bernardino and anywhere in America or Paris, the Middle East or anywhere in the world," Imam Moustafa Al-Qazwini with the Shia Muslim Council of Southern California said.

Dozens joined forces for the interfaith rally honoring the religious diversity of Southern California.

The mayor of San Bernardino, Carey Davis, joined Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and other local leaders.

Garcetti said since the terrorist attack at the Inland Regional Center, there have been 21 incidents of hate in L.A. against Muslims.

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He said hate is not the answer.

"We know that acts of hate that follow seek to divide us and if we are to be a truly safe people, we need not only the protection of those in uniform, we need the trust between one another," Garcetti said.