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Muslim Parents Coming Forward Against Extremism is More Common Than Public Realizes, Muslim-American Leaders Say

Publisher Osama Siblani
Publisher Osama Siblani

By Allan Lengel
For Sphere.com (A new AOL news site)

WASHINGTON — The dramatic, fast-paced events of recent weeks that had parents contacting the FBI and CIA about their children’s links to radical Muslims may clear the way for other reluctant parents to come forward, say key figures in the Muslim-American community.

But on the flip side, leaders fear the cases may leave the wrong impression that the Muslim parents in Northern Virginia and in Nigeria who stepped up were exceptions, and that others ordinarily would never do such a thing.

“I am pleased to see the recent two examples,” said Nawar Shora, legal director for the Washington-based American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee. “To see that the Northern Virginia parents did not face any negative ramifications, if anything, it might help push a few people who were uncertain.”

But he said Muslim parents, contrary to what some may think, have contacted authorities before and have long been sensitive to children’s exposure to “self-radicalization.”

“That’s always been there,” Shora said. “No parent wants to lose their kid to extremism.”

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