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mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
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» 09/19/2012
EGYPT
As Coptic teacher is jailed for insulting President Morsi, the Arab Spring enters its twilight
Bishoy Kamel gets two years in prison for posting a Muhammad cartoon on Facebook, and three for insulting President Morsi. Not since the king's era did anyone get such punishment. Moderate Muslims are now wondering if the authorities would defend Christian symbols as forcefully as they do Muslim ones.

Cairo (AsiaNews) - Christians and moderate Muslims are concerned and shocked by the six-year sentence inflicted on Bishoy Kamel, a Christian teacher who posted online satirical cartoons on Islam on 30 July, and allegedly insulted Egypt's president. In front of the courthouse where the trial was held, hundreds of Salafists gathered ready to lynch the offender. Sources close to Kamel's family say that he was beaten in prison. The sentence was passed yesterday, but Kamel's lawyers have already appealed for a retrial by a less biased court.

Nagui Damian, a young Catholic Coptic activist, and a leader in the Jasmine Revolution, told AsiaNews that the sentence has shaken Christians and Muslims, who are afraid of some peculiar positions taken by the president. The last time someone got three years in jail for insulting the head of state, King Farouk was still in power. He was overthrown in 1952.

Nagui Damian said that many Muslims protested and wrote letter to newspapers and online forums, saying that six years in prison for posting cartoons offensive to Islam and insulting President Mohammed Morsi was too much.

During his 30 years of power, even Mubarak was more indulgent. In 2007, a young blogger, Kareem Amer, got only one year for insulting the president.

Other cases involving insults to Islam or the president were settled with fines or a few months in jail.

In the recent wave of anti-American demonstrations caused by the blasphemous Muhammad tape, some Muslim journalists have asked whether the same punishment would have been inflicted on someone who insulted the symbols of other religions, like Christianity.

For the moment, police arrested another activist, Albert Saber, who posted the blasphemous movie trailer online.

According to Nagui Damian, religious minorities and moderate Muslims must speak out to stop Islamists from influencing international organisations and hijack the Jasmine Revolution.

"All Coptic religious authorities have criticised the offensive acts against the Islamic religion. For every Egyptian, Christian or Muslim, insulting religion is a shameful act that must be punished, but there must be impartiality. For this reason, it makes no sense to ask the United Nations to adopt a law on Islamophobia as some Muslim leaders have suggested. The Egyptian state and the International community must defend all religions, not one in particular."


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See also
01/04/2013 EGYPT
Al-Azhar rejects Salafist threats, extends Christmas greetings to Orthodox Copts
03/13/2013 EGYPT - LIBYA
Benghazi, Coptic Christians denounce torture and attempts to convert them to Islam
05/08/2011 EGYPT - ISLAM
At least 9 dead and two churches burned near Cairo
05/07/2012 EGYPT
Soldiers and ordinary citizens together against Muslim extremists
05/02/2012 EGYPT
Clashes between demonstrators, soldiers and hooligans leave 11 dead, 50 wounded

Editor's choices
ISLAM - MIDDLE EAST
Al Azhar and Vatican against terrorism. The ambiguity of the international community
by Bernardo CervelleraThe influential Sunni university denounces " heinous" violence of the Islamic state and demands the world defeat this group “through every possible means". Vatican: terrorism is a threat to all humanity. France claims to fight terrorism, but then sells weapons, aircraft, helicopter gunships to Saudi Arabia, which supports Islamic fundamentalism. Kuwait tolerates Salafis who support the Nusra Front and the Islamic state. Turkey against the Kurds; the United States against Iran, Russia and China.
TUNISIA - ISLAM
Tunis, stop terrorism by closing fundamentalist mosquesPresident Essebsi believes unified and global strategy needed to counter terrorism. The attack in Sousse almost simultaneous with those in France, Kuwait, Somalia. Islamic State claims responsibility.
VATICAN – ITALY
Pope in Turin tells young people to be chaste in love, go against the flow and not retire at 20In his last meeting on the first day of his visit to Turin, Francis met young people in Vittorio Square. In a Question and Answer exchange, he talked about love, friendship and loss of trust towards life. "I understand you. How many hypocrites speak of peace and sell weapons. How can one trust? By following Christ, whose act of extreme love, i.e. the Cross, saved humanity." The pontiff also looked at the horrors of the 20th century as evidence of the loss of trust towards world powers. He urged young people “not to retire at 20,” but “live, don’t just exist.”

Dossier

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