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    Secularism on Trial: Should Religion be Separate from Public Life? ( Opening Statements - 1 of 3 )

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    Does Secular state limit religion? What is Islamic State? Representing the Muslim perspective was Brother Abdullah al Andalusi: Brother Abdullah a public speaker and activist. He is a former Christian who embraced Islam at a young age, and has studied Islam in depth since he was 18. He also has an academic background in Computer Science. Abdullah has had a long experience in working for Islamic revival and the establishment of Islamic shariah in the Muslim world. Abduallah is a member of the Muslim Dawah Initiative its formed of members from the Muslim community with experience in public speaking, apologetics, polemics, research and community work. His activities involve speaking at community centres, universities, colleges and appearances on various TV programmes. He is experienced in debates with Atheists, Secularists and Christians, and has be involved in public and radio debates with Atheists and Christians. He has made hundreds of videos defending Islam on Youtube. He has debated Christians on Hyde Park Corner for the past 5 years. Representing the Atheist was Mr Dan Barker, Mr Barker is a prominent American atheist activist, co-president of the Freedom from Religion who served as a Christian preacher and musician for 19 years, but left Christianity in 1984. Barker received a degree in Religion from Azusa Pacific University and was ordained to the ministry by the Standard Community Church, California In 1975. He served as associate pastor at a Religious Society of Friends (Quaker) church, an Assembly of God, and an independent Charismatic church. To this day, he receives royalties from his popular children's Christian musicals, "Mary Had a Little Lamb" (1977), and "His Fleece Was White as Snow" (1978), both published by Manna Music and performed in many countries. In 1984 he announced to his friends that he was an atheist. The Topic of Debate: Should Religion be Separate from Public Life? Abdullah ِAl Andalusi (Youtube.com/user/mujtahid2006) vs. Dan Barker (www.ffrf.org) ( Birbeck College, University of London, 29th November 2009 )