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Wednesday, May 5, 1999 Published at 17:35 GMT 18:35 UK

World: Europe

Blair praises British Muslims

The British prime minister, Tony Blair, has praised the country's Muslim community for helping Kosovar refugees.

He was speaking in London at the Muslim Council -- becoming the first prime minister to address the body, which represents Muslim groups in Britain.

Mr Blair pointed out that Islamic institutions in Britain had raised nearly four million dollars for the refugees, and said Muslim support over the issue had been a constant source of strength.

The prime minister also referred to the recent bombing in an Asian area of London Brick Lane; he called it a tragic incident but said that the outrage it sparked had helped bring British society closer together.

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