(MINNEAPOLIS, MN, 10/13/13) — The Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-MN) today called on state and national Republican leaders to repudiate comments by Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN), who falsely claimed in a recent radio interview that American mosques are seeking to â€œadvance the goalsâ€ of foreign nations and organizations.
In that interview with Christian radio host Jan Markel, Bachmann said: â€œWeâ€™re seeing this all across America. Itâ€™s like groups want to top each other and be the new latest, largest mosque in North America. What weâ€™re told is that many of them are funded by the Saudi Arabians or the Qataris. And so many of these mosquesâ€™ funding actually comes from foreign countries that have interests in advancing the goals and beliefs of the violent Muslim Brotherhood.â€
Listen to the entire interview.
When the St. Cloud Times asked for evidence that a proposed mosque in that city would be funded by foreign groups, Bachmannâ€™s office did not respond.
The Times quoted CAIR-MN Executive Director Lori Saroya, who said: â€œAmerican Muslims have been feeling the brunt of Michele Bachmannâ€™s fearmongering and bigotry for several years. Religious freedom is a fundamental right and itâ€™s very disturbing to hear a member of Congress insinuate that mosques should not be built in America and Muslims should not be allowed to practice their religion. Her broad-brush smears of the entire Islamic faith tradition remind us of similar smears against Catholics and Jews in the past.â€
CAIR: 6th Rep. Input on Mosque, Refugees Knocked (St. Cloud Times)
In a separate statement, Saroya said: â€œIt is long past time that Republican leaders in Minnesota and nationwide repudiate Representative Bachmannâ€™s extremist and bigoted views. Without a clear rejection of her inaccurate and intolerant remarks, the partyâ€™s silence will appear to be agreement.â€
CAIR-MN noted that Bachmann has a long history of anti-Muslim bigotry.
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-MN Executive Director Lori Saroya, 612-327-6700, email@example.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, firstname.lastname@example.org