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Austria Hosts International Conference on Islam

Western and Muslim leaders and activists are meeting in Austria for a conference on Islam and ways to promote understanding between Muslims and non-Muslims.

Austrian Foreign Minister Ursula Plassnik says the three-day "Islam in a Pluralistic World" is also aimed at increasing dialogue between different religions.

Scheduled speakers include Afghan President Hamid Karzai and Iraqi President Jalal Talabani who is expected to discuss Islam's role in a world of interwoven interests and economies.

Other attendees include former Iranian president Mohammed Khatami and Iranian human rights attorney Shirin Ebadi, who won the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize.

The conference comes as the riots in France have forced new dialogue on how Muslims are viewed in European society.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.