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Steel ‘cross’ will stay at WTC memorial, court says

There will be no separation between this steel "cross" and the World Trade Center memorial.

The Second Circuit Court of Appeals on Monday rejected a bid by American Atheists Inc. to remove the famed cross-shaped steel beams that survived the 9/11 attacks from the National September 11 Memorial & Museum.

The federal appeals panel sided with Manhattan federal Judge Deborah Batts' ruling last year that the relic's historical importance outweighs potential concerns over issues of separation of church and state.

"[Given] the absence of any evidence of ulterior religious motives, and the undisputed historical significance of The Cross at Ground Zero, we conclude that, as a matter of law, the record compels the conclusion that the actual purpose of displaying the cross in the September 11 Museum is a genuine secular interest in recounting the history of extraordinary events," the panel wrote.

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