Detroit Muslim leaders, activists unite against travel ban

- Local imams and inter-faith leaders gathered Wednesday to talk President Trump's executive orders, targeting refugees and seven predominately Muslim nations.

Leaders of the Muslim faith in Metro Detroit are joining together with other faith-based community activists against the executive order banning travel from seven predominantly Muslim nations in the Middle East.

In the face of the executive order, many leaders are feeling defensive about the ban against certain people entering the United States.

"We need to do this continuously almost daily now," Imam Mohammad Ali Elahi said. "This is not how you make America great."

He's not alone. They were joined by other members of the Interfaith Council of Metro Detroit.

"The problem is not the new administration. We are being dissuaded from our core beliefs," Bob Bruttell said. He's the Chair of the organization.

Together, they're meeting with a message of inclusion, rather than exclusion.

"As Muslims say, those who do terrorism cannot, they cannot speak in our name," Elahi said.

The leaders that came together from different backgrounds argue if president Trump's goal is to combat terrorism. They fear this ban may have the exact opposite affects and they fear radical groups will use this as a recruiting tool for terrorists.

"You could not send a greater gift for Isis other than this," Elahi said.

Local leaders in Dearborn and Dearborn Heights say people in their cities are concerned about their future and the future of their families who still live abroad.

Dearborn Mayor Dan Paletko says he's been approached by more than 100 citizens who ask him what if anything can be done.

"I tell them this is a great country, great tradition, just stay patient I'm sure that as this stuff works through the legal system we are going to be just fine. But it's hard to say that to somebody who has a relative stuck in some overseas airport," Paletko said.

The faith leaders encourage anyone who feels down like they do to talk openly about what's happening and voice their opposition.
 

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