Township That Denied Islamic Cemetery Must Issue Permit
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - A judge in Minnesota is forcing a Minneapolis suburban township to issue a permit for an Islamic cemetery.
Zoning rules in Castle Rock Township initially allowed for the cemetery to be built. But, the township board denied an application from the Al Maghfirah Cemetery Association, saying the community would lose about $17,000 in revenue because the cemetery would be exempt from taxes.
Dakota County Judge David Knutson has granted a summary judgment that directs the board to grant the permit. The cemetery association had sued the township late last year and asked the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate whether discrimination against Muslims was a factor.
A release from the Council on American-Islamic Relations Monday says the ruling is a strong signal to those who would discriminate on the basis of religious identity.