'Ground Zero' mosque plans go ahead
Planners have cleared the way for a mosque to be built near New York's Ground Zero site, despite fierce opposition.
The Landmarks Preservation Commission's decision not to declare the building a landmark allows organisers to transform into an Islamic community centre, just blocks from the site of the September 11 terrorist attacks.
National and local politicians and pressure groups spoke out against plans for the mosque, saying it "disrespected" the memory of September 11 victims. Mayor Michael Bloomberg has supported the mosque.
The commission voted 9-0 against granting landmark status to the building.
Commissioners said the building did not meet historic criteria to qualify as a landmark.