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Hundreds show up to comment on Ravalli refugee letter - KPAX.com | Continuous News | Missoula & Western Montana

Hundreds show up to comment on Ravalli refugee letter

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So many people showed up the meeting had to be moved twice. (MTN News photo) So many people showed up the meeting had to be moved twice. (MTN News photo)
Hundreds of people showed up to comment on a proposed letter expressing concern over the federal government's ability to completely vet refugees seeking re-location in the U.S. (MTN News photo) Hundreds of people showed up to comment on a proposed letter expressing concern over the federal government's ability to completely vet refugees seeking re-location in the U.S. (MTN News photo)
HAMILTON -

Hundreds of people show up to express fear and outrage at the idea of Syrian refugees coming to the Bitterroot Valley.

But some people also tell Ravalli County commissioners the Bitterroot has a "moral obligation" to help people fleeing war to find a new home.

County commissioners were caught completely off guard this afternoon when hundreds of people showed up to comment on a proposed letter expressing concern over the federal government's ability to completely vet refugees seeking re-location in the U.S.

The letter came in response to Missoula County's support of refugees coming to Western Montana.

So many people showed up the meeting had to be moved twice. When everyone finally settled in, speakers opened fire, many throwing not just safety concerns into the mix, but religious criticism.

"They pray five times a day. Are we going to have the mosque calling the prayer call in the Bitterroot?"

"The Syrian refugees are among the most persecuted people on Earth right now. We have a moral and ethical obligation to accept these people who are our brothers and our sisters!"

"The United States may not be at war with Islam, but Islam is at war with the United States"

Commissioners took nearly two hours of comments before deciding to approve the letter with a few small changes. It will be sent to the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI. 

RELATED: Anti-Muslim refugee rally hits Missoula

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