NEW YORK — The imam behind a proposed Islamic community center and mosque near Ground Zero said Wednesday that moving it could cause a violent backlash from Muslim extremists and endanger national security. The comments were made in an interview broadcast on CNN.
Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf said the discourse surrounding the planned facility has become so politicized that moving it could result in violence.
He added that the reaction in the Muslim world could be more furious than the eruption of violence following the 2005 publication of Danish cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad.
Opponents of the mosque have contended it should be moved farther away from where Islamic extremists destroyed the World Trade Center and killed nearly 2,800 people.