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Moscow Officials Decide Not To Build Mosque In Park

MOSCOW -- Moscow's Southeastern District has decided not to build a new mosque in a park after numerous complaints by local residents concerned about the potential increase in traffic and loss of green space, RFE/RL's Russian Service reports.

"We have looked through the petitions sent by residents and came to the conclusion that there's a possibility to relocate the [location of the planned] mosque," Maria Yermakova, spokeswoman for Moscow's Southeastern District, told RFE/RL. "There's still no information about how and when -- a final decision about the construction of the mosque will be made following public hearings."

Yermakova said the decision on a new location for the mosque has been returned to the Moscow city administration for review, which includes the mayor's office.

The planned site for the mosque -- in a park in the Tekstilshchiki neighborhood -- was designated by the Moscow administration's architectural commission, Moskomarkhitektury.

Previous plans to build a Russian Orthodox Church on Tekstilshchiki's Volzhsky Boulevard were also opposed by residents for similar reasons.