>Trump offers to buy site of controversial center (CNN)

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By the CNN Wire Staff
September 9, 2010 — Updated 2140 GMT (0540 HKT)

Donald Trump said he wants to buy the space “because it will end a … highly divisive situation.”

(CNN) — Real estate mogul Donald Trump has offered to buy the lower Manhattan site where a Muslim group plans to build an Islamic community center for 25 percent more than the current owners paid for it.

Trump made the offer Thursday in a letter to Hisham Elzanaty, an investor in the Islamic center site.

“I am making this offer as a resident of New York and citizen of the United States, not because I think the location is a spectacular one (because it is not), but because it will end a very serious, inflammatory, and highly divisive situation that is destined, in my opinion, to only get worse,” he wrote.

Trump further stipulated, as part of the offer, that if a mosque is to be built, “it would be located at least five blocks further from the World Trade Center site.”

Trump said he would pay cash for the site “with an immediate closing.”

“Hopefully, something good can happen!” he concluded.

There was no immediate response from Elzanaty.

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