American Muslim Day Parade Winds Through New York City
Aliza Fatima, 12, of Queens and a descendent of Pakistani parents, participates in the American Muslim Day Parade on Sept. 26, 2010 in New York, New York. Photograph by Spencer Platt—Getty Images

Muslim Women and Children Attacked in Hate Crime, New York Officials Say

Sep 10, 2016

This piece originally appeared on Time.

A New York City woman attacked two Muslim women and their infant children in what authorities described as a hate crime.

Emirjeta Xhelili, 32, was arraigned on Friday after she hit the women in the face and body and tried to rip the hijab off their heads in Brooklyn on Thursday, CNN reported. The women had been pushing their children in strollers.

“This is the United States of America, you’re not supposed to be different from us,” Xhelili yelled during the attack, according to court documents. She swore at the women while telling them to leave the United States. “You don’t belong here,” she said, according to the documents.

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Xhelili also pushed one stroller to the ground and rattled the other. The 11-month-old and 15-month old children and their mothers were not seriously injured, CNN reported.

Xhelili was arrested and charged with assault, harassment and reckless endangerment of a child. The Brooklyn District Attorney’s office characterized the incident as a hate crime.

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