July 20th, 2010 11:29 EST
Burn a Koran Day
The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today called on American Muslims to respond to a Florida church`s planned "International Burn a Koran Day" by hosting educational "Share the Quran" Ramadan fast-breaking dinners (iftars) at which copies of Islam`s holy text will be distributed to neighbors, public and law enforcement officials and journalists. (The month-long Islamic fast of Ramadan will begin in August.)
Representatives of the Dove World Outreach Center in Gainesville, Fla., say they will burn a Quran outside the church on September 11 and are encouraging others to follow their example.
SEE: International Burn a Koran Day
Video: International Burn a Koran Day
This is the same controversial church that has been in the news for claiming that "Islam is of the devil" and for protesting recently outside a local mosque.
CAIR Video: Anti-Islam Demonstration in Florida
CAIR-Tampa Asks to Speak at Church with Anti-Islam Sign
"American Muslims and other people of conscience should support positive educational efforts to prevent the spread of Islamophobia," said CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper.
He said CAIR`s research shows that anti-Muslim bias decreases when people have access to accurate information about Islam and are able to connect on a personal level with ordinary Muslims.
Hooper added that the Florida church`s anti-Islam initiative joins similar Islamophobic efforts in that state and nationwide.
SEE: Video: CAIR Rep on CNN to Discuss Opposition to U.S. Mosques
Florida Tea Party to Host "Radical Islamophobe` Who Said Muslims Shouldn`t Hold Political Office
CAIR-OK: Legislator`s Proposal Would Ban Use of Sharia Law
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CAIR is urging all those who support mutual understanding and oppose book burnings to organize a local educational "Share the Quran" iftar during Ramadan.
SEE: CAIR`s Share the Quran Campaign
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.
CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-488-8787 or 202-744-7726, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787, 202-341-4171, E-Mail: email@example.com