Law enforcement agencies in the D.C. area are increasing patrols and monitoring around mosques after a terrorist attack at two New Zealand houses of worship left dozens hurt and at least 49 people dead.
D.C. Police Chief Peter Newsham said there is no credible threat in the United States, but the force would take steps to ensure mosques and other houses of worship are safe.
"One of the things we have to do is make our Muslim community, in particular, feel comfortable," Newsham said.
Newsham said D.C. police are reaching out to all religious communities and will step up security at churches, synagogues and other houses of worship as well. Supervisors will also meet with religious leaders to communicate about security concerns, he said.
Loudoun County police will provide extra patrols at locations of the All Dulles Area Muslim Society, or ADAMS Center, one of the largest Muslim groups in the D.C. area.
The ADAMS Center warned community members to stay observant and warn law enforcement about any suspicious activity.
"This announcement is not to discourage you from doing your daily routines but a simple reminder to be aware as you are out and about," a press release from the group said.
ADAMS Center also announced they will host a vigil at ADAMS Sterling (46903 Sugarland Road) from 7 to 9 p.m. on Friday.
The D.C.-based Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR, condemned the attack.
"We tell our community: Do not be afraid. And do not abandon your mosques. Not today, not ever," said Nihad Awar, the group's executive director.