Connecticut cemetery denies bomber's body - KCTV5

Connecticut cemetery denies bomber's body

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ENFIELD, CT (WFSB) -

The family of the Boston bombings suspects is still trying to find a place to bury the older brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev.

The family wanted him buried in Cambridge, but when the city resisted the funeral director hired by the family started reaching out across New England Including in Connecticut.

The Imam in charge of Enfield's Islamic cemetery told Eyewitness News it's the only one meant solely for Muslims in all of New England.

Imam Mohamed Haidara of Islamic Center of Connecticut said he was shocked when they got a call from that funeral home in Worcester asking if they would take Tsarnaev's body.

Haidara told Eyewitness News that would bring trouble they don't want in Connecticut.

"It should be handled in Boston, and he shouldn't come to Connecticut," said Haidara. "Connecticut had nothing to do with this."

The leader of the Islamic Center of Connecticut says his mosque has been mourning the violence of the Boston Marathon bombings the same as the rest of the country.

This weekend, Haidara found out the funeral director handling Tsarnaev's body was interested in burying him in their Enfield cemetery. He said no.

"Why would they pull us into this," Haidara said. "It's drama and we are just very sad that this happened."

Tsarnaev's uncle arrived this Sunday to arrange for Tamerlan's Muslim burial. The family said they want him buried in Cambridge, where he lived for the last decade.

However, the city manager there asked the Tsarnaev family not to make that request. The funeral director handling Tamerlan's body says he has to go somewhere.

"It has to be accepted. A Muslim cemetery would be much more acceptable to the people there. Most of the cemeteries we have here are nonsectarian with a section set aside for Muslims," said Peter Stefan, who is the funeral director for Tsarnaev Family. "The only true Muslim cemetery is in Connecticut."

Now that Connecticut has turned him down, Stefan said he'll ask the government for help. Residents here say they think it would be best if the family just handled this privately.

"They have to go somewhere or have him cremated and taken home with him if this is going to cause so much trouble," Cynthia Holdren of Enfield said.

Tsarnaev's parents said they will not fly his body back to Russia. But a private group has opened a bank account to raise funds to return his body there.

Connecticut's Islamic community said this whole ordeal is just making everyone suffer even more.

"The entire country, the entire nation feels the pain. and we are part of this nation," Haidara said.

Haidara told Eyewitness News they've asked the Enfield Police Department to keep an extra eye on the cemetery for now.

Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick said he doesn't believe this should be a government issue at all and should be handled solely by the family.

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