SC prayer vigils held to protest immigration law

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COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- Members of Christian, Jewish and Muslim faiths are holding prayer vigils across South Carolina to organize opposition to the state's new immigration law.

The South Carolina Immigrants Rights Coalition says the vigils are Sunday in Columbia, Charleston, Greenville, Spartanburg and Hilton Head Island.

The new law goes into effect Jan. 1 and requires law enforcement officers to call federal officials if they suspect someone is in the country illegally.

The group wants to call attention to a hearing Monday in federal court where the law's constitutionality will be challenged.

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The group says the law counters the religious practice of welcoming newcomers and threatens to destroy immigrants' families.

Another group called the South Carolina Christian Action Council is holding marches and prayer meetings on Sunday in Columbia and Monday in Charleston.

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