During an interview with reporters aired on CNN and other stations, the Boston bombing suspects’ aunt seemingly confirmed that at least one of the alleged bombers was a Muslim.
When asked if her nephews were “devout practicing Muslims,” Maret Tsarnaev replied: “He was not devout.”
“But just recently, maybe two years ago, he started praying about five times a day, which I don’t see anything bad in it,” she said from outside her Toronto home. “I would rather him praying than smoking or doing drugs.”
She confirmed that she was talking about “Suspect 1,” Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26.
However, when someone asked about reports that Tsarnaev was a “devout Christian,” the aunt became irritated and CNN then cut from the interview. It is unclear if the interview had concluded or if the network simply cut away.
The Associated Press is also reporting that she told reporters that her nephew, Tamerlan, had recently become a devout Muslim who prayed five times a day.
She says her brother was desperate when he found out Tamerlan dropped out of his university.
She says Tamerlan married and had a daughter in the U.S.
She called the boys smart and athletic, and she wants proof they are involved in the bombing.
“Within the family, everything was perfect,” the aunt says.
The woman also alleged a conspiracy, saying her nephews might have been framed.
“The picture is staged,” she said.
The suspects’ father also hinted of a conspiracy on Friday and said “all hell” would break loose if his younger son was also killed.
This story has been updated.