Crowds gather for an anti-Islam demonstration outside Phoenix mosque. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION). Protesters on Friday started gathering in Arizona outside a mosque to take part in an anti-Islam demonstration berating Islam and its Prophet Mohammed. More than 900 people said they would be attending the event - scheduled to start at about 6 p.m. local time (0100 GMT on Saturday) - according to a Facebook event. The event was organized by an Iraq war veteran who has posted photos of himself online wearing a T-shirt offensive to Islam and waving the U.S. flag. Some protesters at the Islamic Community Center of Phoenix were armed. Dozens of people also turned up to defend Islam and promote religious co-existence and tolerance. Caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed, which many Muslims view as blasphemous, have been a flashpoint for violence in Europe and the United States. The two gunmen who attacked the event in Texas had worshipped at the Phoenix mosque.