Muslim community groups have responded angrily to a government letter that urged British Imams and mosque officials to challenge "men of hate" who preach extremism.

The letter -- written by Eric Pickles, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, and Lord Tariq Ahmad -- was sent to mosques all over the country:

"We must show our young people, who may be targeted, that extremists have nothing to offer them. We must show them that there are other ways to express disagreement: that their right to do so is dependent on the very freedoms that extremists seek to destroy. We must show them the multitude of statements of condemnation from British Muslims; show them these men of hate have no place in our mosques or any place of worship, and that they do not speak for Muslims in Britain or anywhere in the world."

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