Obama to make first visit to U.S. mosque

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President Barack Obama next week will make his first visit to a U.S. mosque when he visits the Islamic Society of Baltimore, a senior administration official said Saturday.

Obama will “celebrate the contributions Muslim-Americans make to our nation and reaffirm the importance of religious freedom to our way of life,” the official said.

The president is expected to hold a round table with community members and deliver remarks, where he will “reiterate the importance of staying true to our core values – welcoming our fellow Americans, speaking out against bigotry, rejecting indifference and protecting our nation’s tradition of religious freedom.”

Obama has been vocal in his support of Muslims in the U.S., particularly in the wake of GOP presidential front-runner Donald Trump’s call for a temporary ban of Muslims from entering the country.

“We’re not going to strengthen our leadership around the world by allowing politicians to insult Muslims or pit groups of Americans against each other,” Obama said, while speaking at the annual House Democratic Caucus retreat in Baltimore on Thursday. “That’s not who we are. That’s not keeping America safe.”

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