CCTV.com - CNTV English - CCTV News

New York mosque debate could spur worldwide ripple effects: imam

09-14-2010 08:33 BJT

WASHINGTON, Sept. 13 (Xinhua) -- Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, the public face of a controversial plan to construct a mosque near ground zero in New York, said Monday that the contentious debate over the project could have ripple effects worldwide.

"What happens right here, right now, in this city, in our city, matters. It matters more than ever ... The way we seek to reconcile our differences, is watched and is resonating all over the world," he said in a speech from New York.

"Because America is the global superpower today, many Americans don't realize it, but our example speaks loudly to the whole world, " said the chairman of the nonprofit organization Cordoba Initiative.

"What non-Muslims do here and say here matters to the Muslim world," he said during a question and answer period after the speech. "What happens here will have ripple effects."

Opponents have for weeks voiced their disapproval of Rauf's group's plans to build a Muslim cultural center and mosque just blocks from where more than 3,000 people perished in the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center.

While no one is contesting the organization's right to build on private property -- the group has a constitutional right to do so - - the debate centers around whether the project demonstrates insensitivity toward 9/11 victims' families. Some are advocating that the mosque be moved to a location further from ground zero.

Some supporters of the plan have expressed concerns that opponents are motivated by anti-Muslim sentiment and some American Muslims feel they are being unfairly lumped in with extremists.

Regarding the dispute over whether to move the mosque, the imam said on Monday that "everything is on the table" but did not comment on any specific plans.


Hot Videos view more

The celebrations are still continuing as the victorious coach, Joachim Loew, has been honored for his achievement in his hometown of Freiburg.
Germany coach Loew honored in hometown of Freiburg

Chinese men´s national team continued its preparations for next year´s Asian Cup, as they managed a one-all draw against visitors Jordan during a football friendly in Harbin, the capital city of Northeast China´s Heilongjiang Province.
China held to 1-1 draw by Jordan

The defending world champs came into the contest with a perfect 6-and-oh record, but they would be in for a tough first half before opening things up in the second.
USA beat Slovenia 119-76 in quarter-finals

Hot Stories more

UK authorities believe killer of James Foley is a British national

Across the UK the hunt is on for James Foley’s killer, who authorities believe is a British national. As Richard Bestic reports from London, Prime Minister David Cameron cut short his summer break to lead his government’s response.

Israeli war jets renews Gaza strike as truce talks stalled

Three Palestinians were killed and 40 others wounded in the intensive Israeli war jets´ airstrikes on the Gaza city on Tuesday night, shortly before an end of a 24-hour ceasefire in the Gaza Strip,

Missouri police arrest dozens after violent night

As the protests in the town of Ferguson, Missouri turned violent with police facing ´heavy gunfire´ from some ´criminal elements´, cops fired tear gas, stun grenades and arrested 31 demonstrators on Monday night.

Picture in news more

More Video News

Choose TV Program