The nation's largest Muslim civil liberties organization has thrown its support behind efforts to defend a controversial Jewish boundary known as an eruv, which officials in two Bergen County towns have demanded be removed.

In a statement Wednesday, the New Jersey chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR, singled out Mahwah for criticism. Township leaders argue that the eruv – marked by white PVC pipes on utility poles – violates local zoning law.

"In an era of legitimized racial and religious bigotry, the bigots have been emboldened," said CAIR New Jersey Executive Director James Sues. "This is clearly a case of religious intolerance hiding behind a thin veil of barely-applicable local ordinances."

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