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Iraq's diversity institute combats religious stereotypes and hate speech

A new Iraqi institute aims to change the country's discourse toward minorities through educational curricula designed by religious minorities.

On a hot summer day in Baghdad, a group of academics, civil activists, clergymen and leaders of Iraq's various religious groups gathered to launch the Institute for the Study of Religious Diversity, the first of its kind in the Middle East.

The Baghdad-based Masarat, a nonprofit organization focusing on minorities, collective memory studies and interfaith dialogue, launched the new institute, in cooperation with a host of universities and civil rights groups, on July 2. Masarat has published many books on Iraq's minorities and has won international prizes for its promotion of civil rights.

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