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"Muslim Camp" draws teens to combat extremism
by Luke Baker
Like any rousing Islamic preacher, Muhammed Tahir ul-Qadri's voice rises to a shout and his index finger jabs as he hammers home a point.
But rather than angry calls for jihad (holy war) or a vitriolic denunciation of the West and its aggressions against Islam, Qadri's message, equally forcefully delivered, is about moderation, peace, inclusion and understanding.
Addressing a packed auditorium from a raised platform, his words beamed on to large screen behind him, more than 1,000 young followers hang on his every word, even as his lecture moves into its fourth uninterrupted hour.
"Islam is not a religion of seclusion, it is not a religion of detachment," he thunders from the dais, occasionally pausing to wipe the sweat from his brow or adjust his spectacles.
"Any killer of a non-Muslim citizen, he will go to hell. Those who are committing terroristic acts from Pakistan and Afghanistan and claiming it is jihad -- they do not know what jihad is. It is forbidden. There will not be janna (paradise) for them," he hollers, to shouts of approval from his listeners.
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