PITTSBURGH (TheBlaze/AP) — A western Pennsylvania takeout restaurant that serves food from countries at odds with the United States has closed until further notice following a letter reportedly containing death threats.
"We have received a letter today containing death threats and we will be closed until the credibility of the letter can be established by the Pittsburgh police," according to a Friday post on Conflict Kitchen's Facebook page. "We hope to reopen shortly."
Pittsburgh police are investigating the threat against Conflict Kitchen, a kiosk in the city's Schenley Plaza, but declined to release details.
The letter was sent to police, public safety spokeswoman Sonya Toler said Saturday, but she wasn't sure when it was received.
The takeout cafe, which was designed and run by artists hoping to start conversations with customers about countries in conflict with the United States, has served food from Afghanistan, North Korea, Iran, Cuba and Venezuela.
It recently started serving Palestinian food and drew criticism from some, including the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, which said that Palestine wasn't in conflict with the United States and that the restaurant only presented Palestinian viewpoints on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Conflict Kitchen criticized what it called "biased media and powerful political and lobbying groups" and said its mission is promoting understanding.
"We have demonstrated this in the past by presenting the food, culture, and viewpoints of Iranians, Afghans, Cubans, North Koreans, and Venezuelans," the eatery said in a blog post. "We believe that presenting the viewpoints of Palestinians promotes understanding of Palestinians."
The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported that supporters used painter's tape to attach uplifting notes to the eatery Saturday.
One note read, "Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, hate leads to ... me not getting delicious food."
Here's a profile on the Conflict Kitchen from earlier this year by WPXI-TV in Pittsburgh: