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New York Governor Commends Muslim Community

New York Governor George Pataki is commending a Muslim community in western New York state, where an FBI investigation led to the arrest of six suspects, all Yemeni-Americans, believed to be connected to the al-Qaida terrorist organization.

Governor Pataki did not want to comment extensively on the investigation, but he praised the Muslim community in Lackawanna, New York, where the six men lived. "Suffice it to say that, from the beginning of the investigation, continuing through right now, the Muslim community here in Lackawanna, and here in western New York, has been extremely supportive and helpful," said Mr. Pataki.

Lackawanna is a suburb of Buffalo, New York state's second largest city, close to the border with Canada.

The governor cited the local Muslim community's support of the investigation as an example of how crucial co-operation between civilians and law enforcement can be in the fight against terrorism. "Western New Yorkers should not be afraid. Western New Yorkers should be proud," he said. "They should be proud of the way the community helped in this investigation, and they should be proud of the way western New Yorkers have responded since the announcement of the arrests."

Mr. Pataki said the ethnically diverse community of Lackawanna understands that, as he put it, "individuals are charged with serious crimes, but that no family or community is charged with anything."

He also announced the establishment of a new "terror hotline" that New Yorkers can call, if they observe suspicious activity.