Rural US town won't disrupt Muslim graves

By ASSOCIATED PRESS
October 13, 2010 23:53

SIDNEY CENTER, New York — The lawyer for a Muslim community in upstate New York says the local government is dropping plans to take legal action to force the Muslims to shut their tiny graveyard.

Tom Schimmerling, lawyer for the 30-member Sufi community, said Wednesday that he had just received a letter from a town attorney saying the town had decided not to act.

Hans Hass, a spokesman for the Sufi Muslim community, says its members want an apology and a statement that the cemetery is legal.

Hass has said anti-Islamic bigotry motivated a town board vote to try to shut down the cemetery. He said he has a zoning board document saying the cemetery is legal.

Town Supervisor Bob McCarthy didn't immediately return a call Wednesday.

Sidney is about 130 miles (210 kilometers) northwest of New York City.


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