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More inter-Muslim violence in Serbia

November 5, 2006 -- At least two people have been shot and one held in custody on charges of attempting to commit a murder, after the shooter was attacked by members of the Wahabi sect in a southwestern Serbian town of Novi Pazar.

Police at the crime scene in front of the Arab Mosque in Novi Pazar.
Izet Fijuljanin, 37, was attacked by three members of a Wahabi Islamic sect, certain Gicic and two members of Smajilovic family who begun pounding with sticks on Fijuljanin's car that was parked in front of the Arab Mosque in the city's center.

Fijuljanin then shot several times in the direction of the attackers. Witnesses say that the attackers were hurt.

Fijuljanin is held in custody on attempted murder charges and illegal possession of weapons.

Witnesses say that this incident is a continuation of violence that started on Friday when the group of Wahabi believers entered the Arab Mosque with an intent to force the mosque's imam to hold a Wahabi style ceremony.

When the imam Haris Hadzic refused, the Wahabis attacked him and a massive brawl between the Muslims broke out.

Wahabis of the Novi Pazar reciting Kuran.
During the fighting, Habib Fijuljan shot several times in the Mosque's ceiling and the believers started stampeding for the exit.

It is not clear whether Fijuljan and the Fijuljanin who was attacked by the Wahabis later are related. The mosque has been closed.

Novi Pazar has the largest Slavic speaking Islamic community which along with Muslim Albanians represent the minority Muslim communities of Serbia.

Serbia is predominantly a Christian country.


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