The Toronto Star – October 14, 2011
The Sheraton Centre hotel will not host a Muslim religious conference that was to feature speakers who have expressed anti-gay and anti-Semitic views. The Star informed a Sheraton convention services manager about the speakers. A hotel spokesperson then said it had been “cancelled due to the organization’s failure to satisfy a contractual requirement.”
The conference, which had been scheduled for Oct. 23, was organized by the Islamic Education and Research Academy (IERA), a British organization seeking to establish a Canadian presence. “The aim of the upcoming conference, far from promoting hatred, will focus on getting Muslims to pro-actively engage with the wider society by sharing the true essence of the Islamic faith in both word and deed,” the IERA said. Jewish and gay organizations had criticized the IERA for inviting four speakers who had disparaged gays, Jews and Christians.