PARIS — Muslim leaders in the Czech Republic on Monday accused the police of abusing their power after armed officers raided Islamic institutions in Prague over the weekend, detaining 20 people during Friday Prayer at a mosque and a community center, and arresting the publisher of a book that law enforcement officials say incites xenophobia and violence.
A spokesman for the Czech police, Pavel Hantak, declined to identify the publisher or the book. He told the Czech news media that he did not want to help promote a book that disseminated racism, anti-Semitism and violence against what it called “inferior races.”
The police said the publisher was a 55-year-old Czech citizen who had the book translated into Czech. He has been charged with promoting hate speech, a crime punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
Muneeb Hassan Alrawi, the head of the Association of Czech Muslim Religious Communities, said in an interview on Monday that law enforcement officials had indicated that the book behind the raids was “The Fundamentals of Tawheed” by Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips, a Jamaican-born imam, who has been banned from entering Australia and Britain and expelled from Germany because of what his critics call extremist views.