The nation's largest civil rights group for Muslims on Wednesday pushed for Muslim religious leaders in the U.S. to use their mosques as a platform to spread awareness of the swine flu.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) urged Muslim imams throughout the country to dissuade Muslims from partaking in typical "Islamic cultural traditions such as handshakes or hugs of greeting during a local health crisis."

"In times of crisis, public health and safety takes precedence over normal actions and activities that could lead to the spread of infection," said Nihad Awad, CAIR's executive director.

"Imams, because of their access to those attending mosques every day, are well-placed to offer advice to community members based on input from public health authorities."

CAIR issued a statement to Muslim leaders that included symptoms of the disease and preventative measures.

--Jordy Yager