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Ground zero and beyond: four mosque battles brew across US

The bid to build a $100 million mosque and Islamic center two blocks from ground zero has ensnared a president and engrossed a nation. But New York isn't the only city debating a new mosque. Here are four of the most controversial battles nationwide.

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Julia Lundy (r.) and Matt Sky demonstrate Wednesday in front of a proposed Islamic center, including a mosque, two blocks from the World Trade Center site in New York.

Mary Altaffer/AP

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1. 'Ground Zero Mosque' – New York

The battle over Cordoba House, the mosque and Islamic center planned two blocks from the World Trade Center site, is expected to heat up with protests planned for Sunday.

Protesters will include the families of 9/11 victims, residents of the neighborhood, veterans, and construction workers. The same groups are also planning a rally against Cordoba House on the anniversary of 9/11.

Some opponents have said they will sue the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission, claiming it did not follow its own rules when it denied landmark status to the building where center will go.

Polls have consistently found a majority of New Yorkers are opposed to the mosque at that site.

But New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg supports the right of the Muslim community to build the mosque, as do many other New York politicians.

Gov. David Paterson’s office has said he would seek a meeting with the leader of the mosque, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, to explore finding a different location. The Imam has been out of the country as part of a State Department effort to reach other moderate Muslim groups.

Despite the uproar, whether the mosque ever gets built is still not clear. According to an article on Aug. 19 on the website Politico, the organizers have very little of the $100 million they plan to spend.

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