UNC-Duke program too positive on Islam, Trump officials say

The Trump administration is threatening to cut a grant for a Middle East studies program run by the University of North Carolina and Duke University. The administration says the program misuses federal funds to advance “ideological priorities” and unfairly promotes “the positive aspects of Islam” but not Christianity or Judaism.

A recent letter from the Education Department orders the Duke-UNC Consortium for Middle East Studies to revise its offerings by Sept. 22 or risk losing funding from the National Resource Center program.

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos ordered an investigation following complaints that the consortium hosted a taxpayer-funded conference with an anti-Israeli bias.

The department objects to some of the consortium’s offerings and says it has a “lack of balance” in its teachings on religion.

UNC and Duke declined to comment.

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