Community Leader, Imam Hassan Sharif, Fatally Shot Outside Newark Mosque Amid Rising Tensions in U.S.

NEWARK, N.J. – A prominent figure in Newark, Imam Hassan Sharif, was tragically fatally shot outside the Masjid Muhammad-Newark mosque. The incident, which occurred on Jan. 3, resulted in the loss of a beloved community leader.

Imam Sharif was known not only for his religious leadership, but also for his dedication to advocating for social justice and combating gun violence in Newark. His commitment to promoting unity in the community was admired by many.

Sharif, who also worked as a transportation security officer at Newark Liberty International Airport, was shot multiple times outside the mosque at around 6:15 a.m. and was rushed to a local hospital. Unfortunately, he succumbed to his injuries hours later at approximately 2:20 p.m.

Law enforcement officials are actively investigating the case, and Newark’s law enforcement agencies, including the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office, are searching for a suspect. The motive behind the shooting remains unclear at this time.

Sharif’s untimely death has amplified fears and concerns within the Muslim community, which has been increasingly targeted by hate crimes in recent years. Although there is no evidence to suggest that the shooting was motivated by bias or directly linked to international events, tensions have been on the rise due to the Israel-Hamas conflict.

Governor Phil Murphy expressed his condolences and reassured the Muslim community and people of all faiths that efforts will be made to keep all residents safe, especially in or near places of worship.

The loss of Imam Sharif has left a deep void in the Newark community, where he will be remembered for his unwavering commitment to social justice and unity. His tragic death also serves as a stark reminder of the rising concerns regarding hate crimes targeting the Muslim community.

Imam Hassan Sharif’s legacy and impact will not be forgotten, as the community continues to mourn the loss of a beloved leader and advocate.