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Islamic school protesters threaten violence
Police had to move in to calm hundreds of people last night outside a meeting of nearly 900 opposed to a proposal for one of Australia's biggest Islamic schools in south-west Sydney.
One protester issued a stern warning to the Qu'ranic Society, which has lodged the $19 million development application.
"If it does get approved, every ragger that walks up the street is going to get smashed up the arse by about 30 Aussies," he said.
The threat was backed by a number of other locals.
Inside, Christian Democrats MP Fred Nile was one of several speakers voicing opposition to the development.
No Muslim speakers were invited and only one journalist was allowed inside.
Reverend Nile spoke to the media and quoted from a passage in the Koran.
"'Christians say the Messiah is the son of God. That is the utterance of their mouths conforming with the unbelievers before them. God assail them, how they are perverted,'" he read.
"That means all the Aussies who are celebrating Carols by Candlelight this week all over Australia - millions of Australians - are condemned by the Koran.
"Sincere Muslims are supposed to believe this book, the Koran, as the word of God - the word of their God, Allah."
When asked whether he took the Bible literally, he responded: "Many Muslims take this literally, more than we take the Bible".
"I believe the Bible's the word of God but Muslims have greater belief in the Koran than Christians have in the Bible,'" he said.
Obviously you were referring to yourself.
"Many Muslims take this literally, more than we take the Bible".
Pauline Hanson, the former leader of the One Nation Party, has also paid a visit to the town, though the local paper, the Camden Advertiser, reported that she mistakenly thought the proposal was for a mosque rather than a school.
Many locals fear that the campaign is being hijacked by right-wing, nationalist groups with their own agendas.
The Australia First organisation has been advertising for members in Camden, and says it plans to field a candidate in September's local elections.
"Everywhere is being destroyed. Why don't we tell the truth. They're wrecking Australia. They're taking us over," she said.
"Why hasn't anyone got any guts? They've got terrorists amongst 'em... They want to be here so they can go and hide in all the farm houses... This town has every nationality... but Muslims do not fit in this town. We are Aussies, OK."