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» 09/21/2012
ISLAM
A day of tensions and clashes over anti-Islam film
by 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
10/01/2010 TURKEY
Turkish nationalist party organizes Friday prayer in former church-mosque
09/18/2012 INDIA - ISLAM
Card. Gracias: film anti-Muhammad inexcusable, but also violence
by Nirmala Carvalho
09/22/2012 PAKISTAN - ISLAM
Islamabad, "mindless" violence on the day of love for the Prophet: 23 dead and 200 wounded
02/02/2006 ISLAM
Threats and dismissals over Muhammad cartoon strips
09/13/2012 EGYPT
Egyptian Catholic Church spokesman: Pope must go to Lebanon even if the situation is tense

Editor's choices
VATICAN
"Stop! I am asking you with all my heart. Stop!" says pope as he speaks out on the Middle East, Iraq and Ukraine He mentions children, victims of war, "from whom we take away the hope for a decent life," urging the parties to address "every diatribe with the tenacity of dialogue and negotiation and the power of reconciliation". As tomorrow marks 100 years since the outbreak of the First World War, "a day of mourning," we should learn the lessons of history. The Gospel makes us know the true Jesus, the living Jesus, who speaks to the heart and is a life changer as he was for Saint Francis of Assisi. "The joy of finding the treasure of the Kingdom of God comes through, can be seen. Christians cannot hide their faith."
IRAQ - VATICAN
Saddened by "the timidity of the civilised world," Baghdad patriarch's heart bleeding "for the innocent in Iraq, Syria and Gaza" "Forget us not!" says Mar Louis Sako in a message to Card Barbarin on the occasion of the march of solidarity with Iraqi Christians, held today in Lyon.
VATICAN
Pope: I am with the persecuted Christians of Mosul and the Middle East "May the God of peace inspire in all a genuine desire for dialogue and reconciliation. Violence is never defeated with violence. Violence is defeated with peace." At the Sunday Angelus Francis comments on the parable of the wheat and the weeds. God is "patient" He knows "the same weeds in the end, may become good wheat". But "at the time of the harvest, that is, of judgment, the reapers will execute the order of the master separating the weeds to be burned".

Dossier
by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
by Lazzarotto Angelo S.
pp. 528
by Bernardo Cervellera
pp. 240
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