Carla Amina Baghajati, a spokeswoman for the Islamic Community of Austria, told RFE/RL that top European and Austrian officials will attend the opening of the Vienna gathering.
...Baghajati told RFE/RL that Austria, the current EU president, intends to give new impetus to dialogue and better understanding between European countries and their Muslim communities.
"At the moment, Austria has the [rotating] presidency of the European Union
, and in this situation, it's, I think, a very good sign that Austria is picking up the long tradition of dialogue, especially with Islam, and gives something like an impulse to European countries [on] how to build bridges, how to find solutions to the challenges we face together, and to talk together -- and the inner Muslim dialogue is very important as well," she
European Muslims have found themselves under increasing pressure lately.
said that the current crisis highlights the need for European Muslims to reaffirm their dual identity as good Muslims and law-abiding, integrated citizens of a democratic Europe.
"Muslims, whether they are in Great Britain, in Spain or in Russia, share the same feeling that we are part of Europe, and we want to be seen as part of Europe, and we want to get over all these misunderstandings about Muslims," she