Ground Zero mosque developers apply for federal funding

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The developers of an Islamic community centre and mosque near Ground Zero in New York have applied for millions of dollars in public money from a post-September 11 reconstruction fund.

The Park 51 group has risked reigniting a debate over its project by requesting the grant, which is reported to total $5 million (£3.1 million), from the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation.

Its plan to build a base for local Muslims two blocks away from the World Trade Centre site is opposed by a majority of Americans, polls suggest, and has been criticised by high-profile Republican politicians.

President Barack Obama was also criticised after endorsing the project before backtracking and saying he had only meant that it was legally entitled to go ahead....

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