A judge has blocked Con Ed from evicting the controversial Park 51 community center from its Lower Manhattan buildings, after the utility retroactively raised the monthly rent to $47,437 and demanded $1.7 million in back rent. According to the New York Law Journal, Justice Richard Braun noted in his opinion that Park 51 "speculates as to whether defendant may be bowing to unspecified political pressure," referring to the fact that lots of people are upset that a mosque could be built so close to a sacred strip club.

The utility had given Park 51 a notice to pay the $1.7 million by October 4 or face eviction. Judge Braun's order—known as a Yellowstone injunction—gives Park 51 20 days to "meet the deficiencies" alleged in Con Ed's complaint, or challenge them. In the meantime, Braun ordered the community center and its developer Sharif El-Gamal, to put up $881,519, which is the amount that both sides agree Park 51 owes. "I am happy [with the Yellowstone injunction] because I don't want to have my client's tenancy threatened," Park 51's attorney, Matthew Hearle said.

For a more balanced take on the Park 51 center and El-Gamal than you might find on cable news, check out PBS/Frontline's short documentary, The Man Behind the Mosque.