A local mosque leader wants other religious leaders to join him in opposing Florida pastors who burned the Islamic holy book last month.

Dr. Mir Mumtaz Ali is founder and custodian of the Jaama Masjid Muslim Community Center and Social Welfare Organization of Johnston County on River Road in Selma. On Wednesday, he invited local Christians to an interfaith meeting at his Smithfield office.

He told his guests about Pastors Terry Jones and Wayne Sapp of Gainesville, Fla., who held a mock trial for the Quran on March 20 and later burned the book – an act Muslims find offensive. Jones had planned to burn the holy book last year on Sept. 11, but he backed down under pressure from President Barack Obama and religious leaders around the world. Government officials had told Jones the act might provoke violence against American troops stationed in Muslim countries.

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