Georgia county to end religious ban, mosque project can go forward


ATLANTA, Ga (AP) — Newton County commissioners say they will lift a ban on religious institution building permits that were sparked by local opposition to a mosque and Muslim cemetery.

Commissioners say in a statement Wednesday they will vote Sept. 13 on zoning changes, but those changes won’t affect the mosque.

The project needs other approvals before construction can start, but Newton County officials say they will work with members on those steps.

The moratorium prompted the Council on American-Islamic Relations and the NAACP to request a federal civil rights investigation in Newton County. CAIR Georgia director Edward Mitchell thanked county officials for lifting the ban.

Mohammed Islam, religious leader of the Doraville mosque proposing the project, says he plans to continue “building bridges” with neighbors.

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