4 July, 2015 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile






mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 03/16/2011
MALAYSIA
Malaysian government releases 35 thousand Bibles to halt controversy over term "Allah"
Kuala Lumpur cedes to pressure and protests, and allows the Bibles imported from Indonesia to enter the country. The books will overwrite the "only for Christians." Fears of conversions from Islam.

Kuala Lumpur (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The government has released 35 thousand Bibles in Malay language still held at port where they were unloaded. It was the government itself to announce the decision, after the controversy related to the use of the word "Allah" to mean "God." The government had banned the use of the term Allah by Christians, in particular the “Catholic Herald" newspaper. The Supreme Court ruled in favour of the Christians, but the government appealed, and in the meantime blocked two loads of Bibles from Indonesia. (03/12/2011 Christians protest: government blocks 30 thousand Bibles in Malay).

Their release is related to a 1982 Act that allows "a limited and controlled importation and circulation of Bibles in the Malay language, labelled: 'Christians only'," said Idris Jala, an official of the Department of the Prime Minister. "This is a reasonable compromise to handle the polarization of views between Christians and Muslims in the country," the official added. The government had said earlier that the use of the word "Allah" for God by the Christian minority could cause confusion and encourage conversion from Islam, illegal in the predominantly Muslim country.

60% of Malaysians are Sunni Muslims (the official religion of the country), and approximately 19% practice Buddhism, 9% are Christians and 6% Hindus. The remainder is divided between Chinese religions and philosophies, and traditional beliefs.

On 14 March, the bishop of the Diocese of Malacca-Johor, Paul Tan, had officially protested, taking a rare stance  against the blockade of the Bibles ("Al Kitab" in Malay) calling the decision "a blatant example of hypocrisy" , and "a violation of the fundamental right of freedom of religion guaranteed by the Federal Constitution, and defended by Pope Benedict XVI as the right to protect the dignity of the human person and his freedom of conscience."

e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
07/22/2011 MALAYSIA
Malaysia: Christians can not use "Allah" to define God
01/03/2014 MALAYSIA
Some 300 Bibles seized over 'Allah' controversy, a move Malaysian priest calls "unlawful and unconstitutional"
03/12/2011 MALAYSIA
Christians protest: government blocks 30 thousand Bibles in Malay
07/12/2014 MALAYSIA
For Sepang Muslim MP, Catholic rights violated in Allah controversy
01/27/2014 MALAYSIA - ISLAM
Molotov cocktails and banners against churches. Malaysian priest warns of escalating sectarian divisions

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

Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.