Muslim-American Leaders Intensify Youth Outreach Initiatives

A coalition of national and community-based Muslim groups have announced an anti-terror campaign geared toward Muslim-American youth.
The announcement comes on the heels of the recent attacks on London’s mass transit system carried out by British-born suicide bombers, which raised concerns about the vulnerability of American-born Muslim youth to recruitment by terrorist groups.
”I think if anything what London has shown is that we’re all vulnerable. Young people who are very passionate and open are always vulnerable to madmen and extremists,” said Mahdi Bray, executive director of the Muslim American Society Freedom Foundation.
“We’re not immune to that, so we have to be vigilant. It requires a lot of community effort.”
Following the second attempted terrorist attack in London, the Muslim Public Affairs Council and the Islamic Society of North America issued a statement on behalf of young Muslim-Americans condemning the distortion of Islam into an ideology of hatred.
”This afternoon, the world witnessed a second terrorist attack on London. In light of these hostile events, we Muslim American students and youth stand united in condemning all acts of terror and the burgeoning war on ideas. We refuse to remain silent while others claiming to represent Islam preach an ideology of hatred.”
The statement was signed by over 50 Muslim student and community groups nationwide and marks the beginning of the first national campaign launched by Muslim youth. Though still in the developmental stages, the group has drafted a vision statement and hopes to use Internet outreach, youth summits, and other activities to encourage young Muslims to be involved, politically and socially, in their communities.” I think a lot of times there are members of the community that really fall into a mentality where it’s almost like it’s us versus them. We want this to be a diversification process,” Amin Al-Sarras, a college student and leader of the new initiative, said. Al-Sarras also serves as D.C. project coordinator for the Muslim Public Affairs Council.

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Editor: Akhtar M. Faruqui
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