Muslim Community Encouraged by Immigrant Affairs Commissioner

Members of the city's Muslim community are expressing optimism about Mayor Bloomberg's choice for a new immigrant affairs commissioner. He appointed an education adviser from his administration named Fatima Shama, who speaks five languages - including Arabic - and whose father is Palestinian. Linda Sarsour, with the Arab American Association of New York, expects Shama to push for Muslim holidays in public schools.

SARSOUR: Being a commissioner might give her more power in that area and I think she can be a stronger advocate.

The mayor has opposed adding Muslim holidays to the school calendar.

Shama replaces previous immigrant affairs commissioner, Guillermo Linares, who now works for Bloomberg's re-election campaign.

Linares also dropped out of a run for an open City Council seat in Northern Manhattan.