Incident Summary:

11/21/1979: The Islamic Center of Corona Inc., in Queens, New York, United States, was set afire by three male youths. Before setting the fire, the youths painted the words "Free Americans or You All Will Die" on the wall of the Center. Then, they broke a window and poured flammable liquid into the wooden building, and ignited it. There were no casualties in this incident, and there was light damage to the front door and first floor of the building. Though the fire spread to the adjoining building, no serious damage occurred there. The fire was set, apparently to protest the holding of American hostages in Iran at the captured American Embassy in Tehran.



United States

North America

region/u.s. state:

New York

New York City

Location Details:
Queens; 101-03 43rd Avenue

Attack Information
Type of Attack (more) Facility/Infrastructure Attack
Successful Attack? (more) Yes
Target Information (more)
Target Type: Religious Figures/Institutions
Name of Entity Islamic Center of Corona
Specific Description Islamic mosque
Nationality of Target United States
Additional Information
Hostages No
Ransom No
Property Damage Yes
Extent of Property Damage Minor (likely < $1 million)
Value of Property Damage Unknown
Weapon Information
Type Sub-type
Incendiary Arson/Fire
Weapon Details
ignited a flammable liquid
Additional Information
Suicide Attack?No
Part of Multiple Incident?No
Criterion 1 (more) Yes
Criterion 2 (more) Yes
Criterion 3 (more) Yes
Perpetrator Group Information
Group Name Claimed Responsibility
Unknown No
Perpetrator Statistics
Number of Perpetrators 3
Number of Captured Perpetrators Unknown
Casualty Information
Total Number of Casualties 0 Fatalities / 0 Injured
Total Number of Fatalities 0
Number of U.S. Fatalities 0
Number of Perpetrator Fatalities 0
Total Number of Injured 0
Number of U.S. Injured 0
Number of Perpetrators Injured 0
"A Mosque Is Set Afire By 3 Youths in Queens," New York Times, November 23, 1979.
Robert Blair Kaiser, "Iranians in U.S. Fear Retaliation On Two Fronts; Temple Damaged by Fire," New York Times, November 22, 1979.
Christopher Hewitt, "Political Violence and Terrorism in Modern America: A Chronology," Praeger Security International, 2005.