Owner of mosque site rejects Trump offer

Sept. 10, 2010 at 1:21 PM
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NEW YORK, Sept. 10 (UPI) -- A lawyer for one of the men involved in a controversial New York mosque says his client found an offer from Donald Trump to buy the site "laughable."

Wolodymyr Starosolsky told the New York Post that Hashim Elzanaty wasn't impressed by Trump's approach. Trump sent a letter Thursday offering to buy the site, an undistinguished 19th-century building that formerly housed a Burlington Coat Factory store, for 25 percent more than Elzanaty paid.

Elzanaty thought the letter was "somewhat laughable," Starosolsky said.

"Is he a savior now? Donald Trump? I don't know anything that he saved before," the lawyer said. "He's just trying to recapture the limelight and get into a situation that he doesn't really know anything about," Starosolsky said. "This is not a serious offer, and frankly Mr. Elzanaty is sort of disappointed, because he considers this an insult to him."

The proposed cultural center for the site would include a restaurant, meeting rooms and galleries, a fitness center and pool. It would also have a prayer room and critics have dubbed it the "Ground Zero mosque" because it is two blocks from the World Trade Center site of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

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