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Bush Delivers Message of Health, Prosperity Marking End of Ramadan

President Bush has marked the end of the holy month of Ramadan with a message of health and prosperity for Muslims around the world.

President Bush spoke Thursday under the ornately-decorated dome of the Islamic Center of Washington, a place of worship Mr. Bush says has contributed greatly to the spiritual and cultural life of the nation's capital.

"On behalf of Laura, and our family, and the American people, I bring our best wishes to all who worship here," the president said. "And to Muslims throughout the world for a joyous Eid and for health and happiness and prosperity in the year to come. Eid Mubarak. God Bless."

It was the president's second visit to Washington's Islamic Center. The first followed last year's terrorist attacks in New York and Washington at a time of growing anti-Muslim violence in the United States.

President Bush used that visit to denounce the violence, saying it was against America's founding principles of religious freedom and tolerance.

Marking the end of Ramadan Thursday, President Bush returned to the themes of an inclusive society, saying millions of Muslim-Americans lead lives of honesty and justice and compassion, making valuable contributions to the nation everyday.

"Muslim members of our armed forces and of my administration are serving their fellow Americans with distinction upholding our nation's ideals of liberty and justice in a world of peace," he said.

The president has had a busy start to the holiday season with a ceremony marking the Jewish festival of Hanukkah Wednesday evening and the lighting of the national Christmas tree later Thursday.