New York’s Mayor Michael Bloomberg has publicly backed the construction of a Muslim cultural centre two blocks from the site of World Trade Center.
Bloomberg hosted an Iftar evening, the meal where Muslims break their Ramadan fast, and defended the project on the grounds of religious freedom.
“Islam did not attack the World Trade Center. Al Qaeda did. To implicate all of Islam for the actions of a few who twisted a great religion is unfair and un-American,” Bloomberg said.
The proposed 100 million dollar building has met with fierce opposition from conservative politicians who claim the plan is an insult to the close to 3,000 people killed in the September 11 attack.
The debate has now gone national as the November elections loom when Republicans will attempt to take control of the US Congress from the Democrats.