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Page last updated at 11:07 GMT, Thursday, 10 March 2011

Hearing to probe US Muslim influences

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Heated debate, sharp accusations and public protests - they're not uncommon at US congressional hearings but this time it's all taking place before even the first witness has been called.

The controversial issue of how vulnerable the American Muslim community is to radical influences like al Qaeda will be the topic of testimony at the homeland security committee.

But as the BBC's Tom Burridge reports the hearing is already hitting a sour note for many.

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