Sumach Dawud (C) holds up a poster in support of the Islamic Community Center during a rally in support of an Islamic Community Centre in Phoenix, Arizona on May 29, 2015. AFP PHOTO/ Dave Cruz
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More than 200 protesters, some armed, berated Islam and its Prophet Mohammed outside an Arizona mosque Friday in a provocative protest that was denounced by counterprotesters shouting "Go home, Nazis," weeks after an anti-Muslim event in Texas came under attack by two gunmen.Among the anti-Islam protesters, some of whom called Islam a "religion of murderers," more than a dozen men in military clothing carried semi-automatic weapons.Anti-Muslim groups have been active in the United States, buying ads and staging demonstrations characterizing Islam as violent, often citing the murderous brutality of ISIS militants in Iraq and Syria.The Phoenix mosque targeted on Friday has condemned such violence and held a series of sermons at Friday prayers last year by an imam who criticized militant Islamist groups such as Islamic State, Al-Qaeda and Nigeria's Boko Haram.Leaders of the Phoenix Muslim community confirmed both gunmen had attended the mosque targeted in Friday's demonstration.Anti-Islam activist Pamela Geller, who organized the Texas event, said she was not involved in the Phoenix demonstration.
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