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Uncle Had Falling-Out With Bombing Suspect Over Islam

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Tamerlan Tsarnaev (Photo Courtesy: Lowell Sun)

Tamerlan Tsarnaev (Photo Courtesy: Lowell Sun)

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MONTGOMERY VILLAGE, Md. (CBS/AP) — An uncle of the Boston Marathon bombing suspects says a falling-out with one of his nephews because of the man’s increased commitment to Islam was the reason they hadn’t spoken since 2009.

Ruslan Tsarni says he grew concerned about Tamerlan Tsarnaev when he told him in a 2009 phone conversation that he had chosen “God’s business” over work or school. Tsarni said he then contacted a family friend who told him Tsarnaev had been influenced by a recent convert to Islam.

Tsarni says the two hadn’t spoken since that call. The 26-year-old Tsarnaev was killed in a shootout with police Friday. His younger brother, 19-year-old Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, was captured that evening.

Tsarni says he was relieved his younger nephew was captured alive so he could seek forgiveness from the bombing victims.

Tsarni told reporters on Friday that the two bombing suspects wasted an opportunity for a great life.

“This is the ideal micro-world in the entire world,” he said of the United States. “I respect this country. I love this country; this country which gives chances to everybody else to be treated as a human being.”

(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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