RealNews

Muslim Nations Skip Meeting With Europe

In a summit meeting marked as much by who was not there as who was, the European Union opened a two-day conference here on Sunday aimed at renewing its commitment to developing and democratizing Muslim nations on the Mediterranean’s southern rim. Many of the North African and Middle Eastern leaders who had agreed to come to the meeting announced last week that they could not attend. Their absence weakens European claims that their approach to the Muslim world – based on economic development, dialogue, strengthening the rule of law, and other forms of soft power – has greater credibility with the region’s leaders than what they see as the Bush administration’s more aggressive approach.Full Story

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