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CHARLOTTE, NC (AP) — An attorney says Muslim religious leaders who were wrongly kicked off two commercials flights as they tried to travel to a national conference in Charlotte are receiving hundreds of e-mails and messages of support.

Mo Idlibi of Charlotte said some pilots have told the imams they were sorry. But he said Thursday the airlines should be held accountable.

Imams in Memphis and New York headed to the conference were asked to leave the planes. They already had passed through security at the airports before being stopped by airline personnel.

Federal regulation allows an airline to refuse to transport an individual that it decides is unsafe. The rules say the pilot has ultimate authority but cannot make the decision solely because of religion.

The airlines say they were investigating.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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