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Last Updated: Tuesday March 28 2006 17:03 GMT

Islamic pupils 'need protection'

Religious books
An important group of Muslim leaders want more done to protect children studying at special Islamic schools.

The schools are called madrasas and lots of children go to them to learn about their religion and the holy book the Koran.

The report by Muslim leaders found that special rules to protect children from being hurt at school are being ignored at some madrasas in the UK.

They've now called for all the schools to follow the law and protect pupils.

Madrasas are important to Muslim communities and there are about 700 of the schools in the UK, teaching about 100,000 children.

Most of these schools are attached to local mosques or Islamic groups.

Muslim leader Lal Hussain
Muslim leader Lal Hussain
Muslim leader Lal Hussain told Newsround that children attending the Islamic school where he works are treated with respect.

Mr Hussain said: "We want to make sure the children are not ill-treated and that there's no physical contact with the children - I think that is very important."

Frightened

One problem is that in many cases children who have been mistreated at madrasas are too frightened to tell other adults they have been hurt.

Leaders say proper guidelines should be put in place so there is no confusion over the law and kids' rights can't be ignored.



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