Planned Koran burning in US called off by Florida pastor

Rev. Terry Jones announces that he has agreed to call off book burning if New York imam agrees not to build Islamic culture center near Ground Zero site.

By JPOST.COM STAFF, ASSOCIATED PRESS
September 10, 2010 01:03
1 minute read.
Rev. Terry Jones at the Dove World Outreach Center

Florida reverend 311. (photo credit: Associated Press)

The American reverend who planned to stage a public Koran burning on the anniversary of 9/11 announced  on Thursday that he had canceled the planned event, according to various US media reports.

Rev. Terry Jones said that he decided to cancel the book burning after the imam for the proposed "Ground Zero mosque" agreed to build his group's Islamic cultural center elsewhere in New York City. He plans instead to fly to New York on Saturday to meet with the Muslim cleric, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf.

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Sources close to the imam have not confirmed Jones's claims.

US President Barack Obama had previously exhorted Jones to "listen to those better angels" and call off his plan to engage in a Koran-burning protest.

Obama told ABC's "Good Morning America" in an interview aired Thursday that he hopes the Rev. Terry Jones of Florida listens to the pleas of people who have asked him to call off the plan. The president called the burning a "stunt."

"If he's listening, I hope he understands that what he's proposing to do is completely contrary to our values as Americans," Obama said. "That this country has been built on the notion of freedom and religious tolerance."

"And as a very practical matter, I just want him to understand that this stunt that he is talking about pulling could greatly endanger our young men and women who are in uniform," the president added.

Obama continued, "I hope he listens to those better angels and understands that this is a destructive act that he's engaging in," the president about Jones.


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