Nation of Islam Minister Louis Farrakhan says an Islamic community center and mosque planned near ground zero should be built because Muslims were among those of many faiths who died in the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
Farrakhan spoke at the National Press Club in Washington along with a coalition of African-American Muslims. They say the controversy over the building is indicative of a rise in racism toward minorities.
Opponents of the center say it's an issue of being sensitive to the families of 9/11 victims and transparency regarding the funding. Farrakhan says the area is also hallowed ground to blacks who are Muslims.
Early plans for the $100 million center call for a Sept. 11 memorial open to the public and a prayer space.
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