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    » 09/21/2012, 00.00

    ISLAM

    A day of tensions and clashes over anti-Islam film

    Paul Dakiki

    In Pakistan began the "Day of love for the Prophet." Violence in Nowshera. Yesterday clashes with police in Islamabad, with 50 wounded. U.S. embassies closed in France and in many countries. The video of the blasphemous film blocked. Together, Christians, Muslims and politicians ask the UN for international guidelines against defamation of religions.

    Beirut (AsiaNews) - In many Muslim countries, the Friday prayer isin danger of turning into a day of violence. The scandal caused by the US youtube film and Charlie Hebdo cartoons of Mohammed in France, is likely to become an excuse for extremists to exploit. Many diplomatic missions of the United States and France were closed for fear of attacks similar to those that led to the death the U.S. ambassador to Libya, Chris Stevens. So far, 30 people have lost their lives because of the blasphemous film.

    In Pakistan, the government has declared today a "Day of love for the Prophet" and called for peaceful demonstrations. Parades have developed in Muzaffarabad, Rawalpindi, Nowshera, Jacobabad and other cities. But already there are reports of violence against some government buildings in Nowshera. Yesterday in Islamabad a police station was set on fire and there were 50 wounded. Today, warehouses, shops and markets are closed and in 15 cities, the government has blocked the use of mobile phones.

    So far there has been no violence in Malaysia and Indonesia, but the U.S. embassies in Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta were closed.

    Yesterday, there were demonstrations in Kabul (Afghanistan) and Tehran. In Zaria (northern Nigeria), thousands of Muslims demonstrated and burned Israeli and American flags.

    Many governments are trying to curb the spread of the 15 minute film posted on Youtube. Pakistan and Sudan have blocked access to the film. Google (which owns YouTube), for its part has restricted access to the film in Egypt, Libya, Malaysia and Indonesia.

    As the climate of tension grows, the UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon told reporters that "freedom of expression, which is a fundamental right and a privilege, should not be misused to commit a outrageous and shameful act," such as the anti-Islam film.

    Many nations are now pushing for a UN directive prohibiting offense to the religious symbols of Islam and all religions. In Lebanon, the proposal is supported by the March 14 movement (Christians and Sunnis) and the March 8 coalition (Christians, Hezbollah and Druze), as well as a group of Greek-orthodox politicians. The Maronite Patriarch Bechara Rai suggests a UN law against the defamation of religions, for the preservation of harmony between religions.

    A similar question has been expressed by various Islamic organizations. Some Anglican bishops of North Africa have written an open letter to Ban Ki-moon asking for international guidelines that "outlaw the intentional deliberate insult and defamation of people (like the prophets), symbols, texts and expressions of faith that are considered sacred by believers. "

     

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    See also

    01/10/2010 TURKEY
    Turkish nationalist party organizes Friday prayer in former church-mosque
    The Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) prepares Friday prayer in the former Meryemana cathedral among the ruins of the medieval city of Ani on the border with Armenia. A ham-fisted response to permits received by the Orthodox and Armenians to celebrate in illustrious former places of worship.

    18/09/2012 INDIA - ISLAM
    Card. Gracias: film anti-Muhammad inexcusable, but also violence
    The president of the Bishops' Conference of India (CBCI) calls for dialogue and peace to stop the protests provoked by the film. Freedom of expression in the media is unquestionable, but it "should not be used to offend or ridicule others." A plea for tolerance and mutual understanding to all spiritual leaders, Christians, Muslims and Hindus.

    22/09/2012 PAKISTAN - ISLAM
    Islamabad, "mindless" violence on the day of love for the Prophet: 23 dead and 200 wounded
    The demonstrations which started peacefully, were derailed by militants and activists. In the capital, the rampaging mob burned four cinemas, six banks, four police cars, two restaurants, a lot of cars. Many buildings plundered. Several people embittered by killing "in the name of Allah." Electoral interests and power struggle behind the scandal of the anti-Islam film.

    02/02/2006 ISLAM
    Threats and dismissals over Muhammad cartoon strips

    The French, Danes and Norwegians are "targets", warn some Palestinian militant groups Dismissed the director of  France Soir who published them, but there are still numerous European papers who are carrying them.  Hezbollah leaders evoke the Khomeini fatwa against Salman Rushdie.



    13/09/2012 EGYPT
    Egyptian Catholic Church spokesman: Pope must go to Lebanon even if the situation is tense
    Fr. Rafic Greiche underlines the extreme importance of the Pope's trip as a bearer of peace to a Middle East victim of hatred and war. For the priest the attacks sparked by satirical film about Muhammad are against the United States, not against Christians. The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood launches a major protest for September 14 in Cairo and other cities of the country. The Egyptian Copts criticize the film.



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