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"McConnell warns of ‘uprising’ if Islam sermon leads to jail term"
"The Belfast preacher due back in court next week over a controversial sermon on Islam, has said a guilty verdict would spark an 'uprising'.
Pastor James McConnell was charged following the broadcasting of remarks he made from the pulpit of the Whitewell Tabernacle last May.
When a video of the sermon was uploaded to the Newtownabbey church’s website, it showed the 78-year-old describing the Islamic faith as 'heathen' and 'satanic'.
Mr McConnell was subsequently prosecuted with the three-day trial held at Belfast Magistrates’ Court last month.
Judgment has been reserved and will be delivered on Tuesday.
Speaking to the News Letter on Friday, Mr McConnell said he shared his legal team’s optimism that the verdict will go in his favour, but warned of widespread anger if he is jailed.
'I am willing to go to jail and I am going to stand for what I believe in. If the verdict goes against me – and they do put me in jail – there will be such an uprising in this country.'
However, Mr McConnell said imprisonment was a price he was willing to pay rather than renounce his beliefs."
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