Western Muslims from U.S. and Belgium Talk Out Their Differences in Brussels

November 18, 2005

Source: MPAC


On November 18, 2005 MPAC reported, "This week, the Muslim Public Affairs Council took part in a historic conference in Brussels, entitled 'Muslim Communities Participating in Society: A Belgian-U.S. Dialogue'... The conference was convened at the request of U.S. Ambassador to Belgium, Tom Korologos, and the Director-General of the Royal Institute for International Relations. However, the content of the conference was focused on civic society rather than government engagement. MPAC officials were among 30 American Muslim representatives from some of the largest Muslim organizations... Central to the conference was the articulation of a 'Western Muslim identity,' and the emergence of a movement for establishing roots in America and Europe in articulating an authentic message of Islam within the European and American context. The mayors of Dearborn, Michigan and of Genk, Belgium both provided perspectives on the status of Muslims in their respective communities. Research presentations on Muslims in Belgium and the U.S. were also made at the conference. All assembled community leaders engaged in planning for the advancement of Western Muslims through civic life, media portrayal, women's issues, youth development and economic opportunity. Presentations by the participants concluded the conference with ambitious plans to develop youth empowerment, to end domestic violence, and to promote Muslim minority jurisprudence."