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US State Dept Sends Mosque Imam to Mideast

feisal abdul rauf 0803 US State Dept Sends Mosque Imam to Mideast

WASHINGTON– State Department officials on Monday confirmed Feisal Abdul Rauf, the Imam of the so-called Ground Zero Mosque, will soon be going on a trip of the Middle East and the U.S. government will be picking up the tab.

The planned construction of a mosque near Ground Zero in New York City has set off a contentious national debate over religious freedom in the U.S., drawing impassioned opposition from some families of 9/11 victims.

Rauf has emerged as a controversial figure because of his refusal to acknowledge Hamas as a terrorist organization, which is how the U.S. government classifies the group. The imam also has been quoted as saying U.S. foreign policy was in part responsible for the 9/11 attacks.
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