|Some 200 secular, religious and media groups from around the world on Wednesday urged the United Nations Human Rights Council to reject a call from Islamic countries for a global fight against "defamation of religion."|
The groups, including some Muslim bodies, issued their appeal in a statement on the eve of a vote in the Council in Geneva on a resolution proposed by the 56-nation Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC).
Such a resolution, the statement said, "may be used in certain countries to silence and intimidate human rights activists, religious dissenters and other independent voices," and to restrict freedom of religion and of speech.
The resolution, its critics say, would also restrict free speech and even academic study in open societies in the West and elsewhere.
Islamic countries argue that criticizing or lampooning religions is a violation of the rights of believers and leads to discrimination and violence against them. Cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad, first published in a Danish newspaper, sparked riots in the Muslim world in 2006.
Thursday, March 26, 2009
U.N. urged to reject bar on defamation of religion
World: It will probably pass considering the majority of Muslim nations able to vote on it but the upside is it makes the United Nations Human Rights Council more a joke to others.