Press Releases

CAIR Director Breaks Ground for First Alaska Mosque

Alaska World Affairs Council invites Nihad Awad to speak on Islamophobia’s impact on national security
(WASHINGTON, D.C., 10/19/10) — Nihad Awad, the executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), recently broke ground for the first mosque in Alaska and offered an address on “The Rise of Islamophobia and Its Impact on National Security” at an event hosted by the Alaska World Affairs Council in Anchorage. Awad also gave a lecture on “The Islam You Don’t See on Cable TV” at Alaska Pacific University.
SEE: Islamic Center of Anchorage
In his address to the Alaska World Affairs Council, Awad defined Islamophobia and outlined its recent rise in the United States, prompted by a vocal minority of Muslim-bashers.
Awad explained how growing anti-Islam sentiment in American society impacts the lives of ordinary Muslim citizens.
“Through the manipulation of legitimate fears and emotions, a cynical minority of Islamophobes is attempting to poison the minds of a generation of Americans and to pervert our nation’s longstanding traditions of religious diversity and acceptance of differing beliefs,” said Awad today.
He said the hate-filled agendas and misinformation promoted by Islamophobes who seek fame and fortune by creating mistrust and societal divisions must be exposed.
“American Muslims have a duty to help educate others about their faith, and a duty to create opportunities for dialogue and frank and open conversations,” said Awad. “We must also speak out against domestic and foreign policies that are based on Islamophobia, because these policies are counterproductive, self-defeating and un-American.”
In his lecture at Alaska Pacific University, Awad explained basic Islamic beliefs and practices. He said the experience of the vast majority of mainstream Muslims worldwide is not reflected in many cable television talk shows or Hollywood productions.
CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
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CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-488-8787 or 202-744-7726, E-Mail:; CAIR Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787, 202-341-4171, E-Mail:


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