Why is the US Air Force Having a CENTCOM Conference with “a Room Specifically Set for Prayer for Those of Islamic Faith”?

According to FedBizOpps, one of the Federal Government’s official outlets for subcontracting,  the Air Force announced on December 7th, 2015 that it was soliciting bids for a hotel venue for its Central Regional Communications (CENTCOM) Conference, which will be held some time between April 19th and April 29th of 2016.

As is common with such bids, there are few details given. However, there was one peculiar request made for potential bidders:

“a room specifically set for prayer for those of Islamic Faith”

Not only was the request for a prayer room, but the room would be available for use for three days– half of the conference’s six-day duration.

The solicitation number is F2vvJ612072015 on FedBizOpps. The entire advertisement can be found here, and below you can view snapshots of the same request:a

g

h

Here is the part requesting “a room specifically set for prayer for those of Islamic Faith”:

c

Here is a copy of the schedule stating that the prayer rooms will be available for three out of the six days of the conference:

d

At the current time, there are two conclusions that we can definitively surmise from this bid. First, is that Muslims will be present at the conference. Second, is that there will be a lot of Muslims present, so many that they will need and/or are requesting their own prayer space.

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