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US political, religious and military leaders denounce "Burn a Koran Day" stunt

US political, religious and military leaders denounce "Burn a Koran Day" stunt

Categories: Latest News

Wednesday September 08 2010

The US military commander in Afghanistan, General David Petraeus, has expressed grave concerns over the planned “International Burn a Koran Day” organized by Dove World Outreach Centre in Gainesville, Florida to coincide with the ninth anniversary of the Sept 11th attacks, saying it could “endanger troops and the overall effort in Afghanistan”.

The Daily Telegraph reports on comments made by General Petraeus on the Qur’an burning stunt by the Florida based centre:

“I am very concerned by the potential repercussions of the possible Koran burning,” said Gen Petraeus.

“It could endanger troops and it could endanger the overall effort in Afghanistan,”

“It is precisely the kind of action the Taliban uses and could cause significant problems. Not just here but everywhere in the world we are engaged with the Islamic community.”

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton added her condemnation to the proposed act saying “I am heartened by the clear, unequivocal condemnation of this disrespectful, disgraceful act that has come from American religious leaders of all faiths.

“Our commitment to religious tolerance goes back to the very beginning of our nation. Many of you know that in 1790, George Washington wrote to a synagogue in Newport, Rhode Island, that this country will give ‘to bigotry no sanction, to persecution no assistance’. The real story of Islam in America can be found in this room and rooms across America. We write it tonight in the spirit of fellowship and the celebration of goodwill that is a hallmark of Ramadan. We will write it in the months and years to come as we continue to reach out to engage people around the world in a search for common ground, common understanding and common respect.”

Religious leaders in the US have also denounced the proposal decrying the “misinformation and outright bigotry” displayed towards American Muslims over the planned Islamic Centre in New York adding that they are “appalled by such disrespect for a sacred text“.

With a website that declares Islam a “violent and oppressive religion”, offers “Ten reasons to burn a Koran”, promotes a book entitled ‘Islam is of the Devil’ (pictured) which claims “that the Koran is leading people to hell,” – one wonders if the bigots that proposed the Qur’an burning day in Florida are likely to be responsive to the call of reason?

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