DoJ Files Suit Against Rutherford County to Force Mosque Opening

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The U.S. Department of Justice has filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee today to force the opening of a controversial Islamic center that has been plagued by legal troubles, xenophobia and arson.

The DoJ alleges that the county violated the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act of 2000 as a result of Rutherford County Chancery Court Judge Robert Corlew's ruling last month that prohibited the county from issuing an occupancy permit for the proposed 53,000 sq. ft. Islamic Center of Murfreesboro.

In a prepared statement, Jerry E. Martin, U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee, said his office will "zealously protect every citizen’s right to worship and assemble."

“If we do not protect the rights of these congregants in Rutherford County," said Martin, "then the rights of all people are endangered and diminished.”

The complaint (found here) seeks to open the mosque July 19, the first day of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.

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