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Dutch PM Visits Mosque, Urges Dialogue

Dutch Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende has visited a mosque following a wave of attacks on Muslim and Christian sites in the Netherlands.

Mr. Balkenende stressed the need for dialogue between communities as he marked the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. He was given a bunch of tulips as a symbol that Muslims feel at home in the Netherlands.

The day before, fire destroyed a small mosque in the town of Helden. There have been more than 20 incidents of arson and vandalism this month at mosques and churches in the Netherlands. The attacks followed the murder of a Dutch filmmaker by a suspected Muslim extremist.

Meanwhile, German President Horst Koehler marked the end of Ramadan with a message urging people in Germany to treat each other with respect and tolerance.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and Reuters.