Blasphemous caricatures spark countrywide protest -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Blasphemous caricatures spark countrywide protest

REPUBLISHING of blasphemous caricatures by Danish press in the name of freedom of expression, sparked countrywide protests and strikes on Friday.

Religious, political, student and social groups called protest demonstrations, meetings and rallies to condemn the European media for sacrilege it committed under the cover of freedom of expression.

Leaders who addressed protestors said that Western press used freedom of expression only to malign Muslims and the Holy Prophet (PBUH). They said the Western press had never questioned the double standards and false principles and ideals under which the West violated the fundamental rights and freedom of Muslims across the world.

Delivering Friday sermon at Mansoorah, Jamaat-e-Islami secretary general Syed Munawar Hasan appealed to the Muslim world to boycott Danish products and register strong protests by calling Danish ambassadors against the re-publication of blasphemous caricatures and protection of an ugly crime by Copenhagen.

He appealed to the nation to observe 12th of Rabi-ul Awwal as the “Day of Protection of Prophet’s (PBUH) honour” and hold rallies.

Munawar also demanded the OIC call an emergency meeting of the organization to evolve a strategy on to represent the aspirations of the Muslim ummah. He also demanded that all Muslim ambassadors in UN should raise the issue inside the world body and shake the world conscience against this offensive act done in the name of freedom of expression.

He said the biggest demonstration on 12th Rabiul Awwal should be held at Diplomatic Enclave in Islamabad in order to make European diplomats realise that Muslims loved the honour and respect of their Prophet (PBUH) more than their lives and could never tolerate such blasphemy.

He said Muslims respected prophets and holy personalities of all religions and never commited offences against them because Islam taught Muslims to respect the holy figures of all religions. Only Europeans have shown contempt of sacred figures by showing disrespect against them under the cover of freedom of expression, he added.

Munawar also demanded that the mandate of parties winning elections should be respected and they should be allowed to form governments in the centre and provinces. He said it was the duty of the winning parties to keep their electoral promises otherwise the nation could consider them a continuation of the previous slavish regimes. He warned that any conditional restoration of supreme court judges will not be acceptable to the nation. He demanded parties winning the elections fulfil their promise to restore Supreme Court judges sacked illegally by General (r) Pervez Musharraf. He said Asif Zardari wanted that judges should not take up NRO after restoration and American wanted that judges should not take up missing persons’ cases after restoration.

Munawar also criticized the statement of Supreme Court Bar president Aitzaz Ahsan that people should forgive the May 12 massacre in Karachi. He said the nation could never forget such bloodshed done by a certain group of people.
Source: The News
Date:3/8/2008