WASHINGTON (AP) - Seeking
to bolster relations with Muslim countries angry about Western
characterizations of Islam, the Obama administration has gathered
representatives from more than two dozen governments this week in an
effort to address religious intolerance around the world.
To critics, the three-day
conference in Washington smacks of appeasement toward hardline Islamist
governments with often dismal anti-discrimination records of their own.
U.S. officials say they're simply promoting education and
understanding, while also rejecting any demands from Arab states and
other countries that want restrictions on free speech.
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