The AME church, targeted 20 years earlier by the KKK, is now in flames again in 2015. The burning is the latest in a series of fires at Black churches following the Charleston Massacre.
Firefighters in Williamsburg County, South Carolina, were called out Tuesday night to Mount Zion AME Church after it was reported to be on fire, local news agencies reported, only days after the FBI announced it was investigating a string of arson attacks on Black churches.
Reports said the fire was burning through the roof and images on social media showed the church engulfed in flames.
This would be the seventh Black church burning that happened after Dylann Roof confessed to massacring nine African-American churchgoers at the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina.
Authorities say they don’t know how the fire began.
This is the second time the church has been on fire. In 1995 the church was burned to the ground by former Ku Klux Klan members. The following year, President Bill Clinton attended a dedication ceremony for the rebuilding of the church.
On Sunday, the FBI launched an investigation into a series of fires that occurred in five predominantly Black churches across the country.
Last Monday, the College Hills Seventh Day Adventist Church in Tennessee was burnt. And on Tuesday, God’s Power Church of Christ in Georgia was intentionally set on fire. On Wednesday Briar Creek Baptist Church in North Carolina was burned in the middle of the night, causing $250,000 in damage.
And on Friday, the Glover Grove Missionary Baptist Church in South Carolina and Greater Miracle Apostolic Holiness Church in Florida were both set on fire. The church in South Carolina was completely destroyed.
Although the FBI has not found the people responsible for the fires or any links between the events, three of the five incidents were ruled as arsons. The others are still being investigated.
Tensions are high in the United States following the Charleston Massacre, which sparked a fierce national debate on racism and racist symbols in the United States in recent weeks.
Activists on social media are using the hashtag #whoisburningblackchurches to raise awareness around the recent series of arson attacks and suspcious fires at Black Churches.
What if there were a resurgence of terrorist attacks on American churches. Should 24news make time for that? #WhoIsBurningBlackChurches?— jesseWilliams. (@iJesseWilliams) June 30, 2015