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Last Updated: Thursday, 22 September 2005, 12:34 GMT 13:34 UK
Muslims search for worship site
Muslims at prayer
The county' s Muslims currently use a room at Truro College for prayers
Leaders of Cornwall's Muslim community have said several Muslim families have left the county because they cannot find facilities for worship and study.

A year ago Muslims were told by Carrick District Council they could no longer use a house in Truro.

They have since said despite considerable efforts to find a new community centre they have failed.

Planning officials from Carrick said there is a big demand for vacant premises and development sites.

Karl Roberts, head of development services at Carrick says there is no evidence of discrimination.

We try to deal with every planning application on its own individual merits, regardless of people's race creed or colour
Karl Roberts, Carrick District Council

"I'm not aware of any hostility to the Muslim community in Cornwall, " he said.

"We try to deal with every planning application on its own individual merits, regardless of people's race creed or colour. "

Duried Rifai, a doctor at the Royal Cornwall Hospital, said it is sad Muslims are leaving the county, which is thought to be the only one in the country not to have a mosque.

He and his wife Olfat, who are from the Lebanon, have lived in the county for 18 years.

'Active people'

He said: "They were really very, very active people in the community.

"For some families religion plays a major part in their life and they felt that was a good reason for leaving the county."

Cornwall's Muslim community said it does not want a mosque, simply a community centre where they can worship and study Islam.

At the moment they use a room at Truro College for prayers on Fridays but say it is too small and believe as many as 200 people in the county could benefit if a new centre was built.


SEE ALSO:
Muslims seek to build mosque
08 Feb 04 |  Cornwall
Muslims seek new worship centre
01 Dec 03 |  Cornwall
'Find out about Islam' - vicar
10 Mar 03 |  England


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