Civil Rights Groups Defend Mosque, Cemetery Outside Atlanta

ATLANTA (AP) — A proposal to build a mosque and Muslim cemetery outside Atlanta has local residents so angry and fearful that their county commissioners have temporarily banned all building permit approvals for religious institutions.

The moratorium prompted the Council on American-Islamic Relations and the NAACP to request a federal civil rights investigation in Newton County. A spokesman for U.S. Attorney John Horn confirmed receipt of this complaint Tuesday, but declined comment.

As for Imam Mohammad Islam, the religious leader behind the proposal, he said he doesn’t intend to take any legal action; instead, he met Tuesday with local leaders of other faiths in Newton County, seeking their support for a fresh start.

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