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< Capitol - Nativity scene
Dec 13, 2011 13:59
Category: Religious News

US - Religious Tolerance

   WASHINGTON (AP) - The U.S. is reaching out to Muslim countries
angry about Western characterizations of Islam by bringing together
representatives from more than two dozen governments this week to
address religious intolerance.
     To critics, the three-day conference in Washington smacks of
appeasement toward hardline Islamist governments. But U.S.
officials say they're simply promoting education and understanding,
while rejecting any demands for restrictions on free speech.
     The dialogue comes after years of complaints from Muslim
governments about perceived offenses against their faith. As
examples, they cite European cartoons of Muhammad and a Florida
pastor's burning of the Quran.
     But their efforts to protect religious beliefs from mockery have
been rejected by the U.S. and Western countries. Such restrictions
would be incompatible with free speech laws in many countries.