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Muslims fear backlash as festival falls near Sept. 11
For nearly a decade, the Islamic Cultural Center of Fresno has held a carnival on the Saturday following the end of Ramadan, during a festival that has been called the Muslim equivalent of Christmas. With pony rides, carnival attractions, games and Middle Eastern food, it's a popular event for the community's children.
This year, the center's leaders had a sense of foreboding when they noticed the date on which the carnival would fall: Sept. 11.
This week, after listening to escalating rhetoric over plans for an Islamic community center within blocks of the destroyed World Trade Center site in New York, the Fresno center canceled the carnival.
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