On January 9th, The Project on U.S. Relations with the Islamic World brought together over 60 key leaders and experts from the U.S. Government, a wide variety of American Muslim groups, and the D.C. think-tank and policy community, on “Bridging the Divide,” for a conference on the potential space for the American Muslim community to assist and advance U.S. relations with the Islamic world and the capabilities within the community that might be better tapped.
The meeting not only served to inform on-going research and policy, but also connected key leaders in the goal of spurring potential positive avenues of cooperation and outreach with the wider Muslim world. Of special focus were sessions on public diplomacy, counter-terrorism, and science and technology cooperation. David Welch, Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs, served as the opening speaker [weblink to agenda]. The initiative plans to follow-up the session with a convening of Muslim minority leaders from around the world at the 2006 U.S.-Islamic World Forum a global leaders conference to be held in Doha, Qatar in February 2006.