Islamic countries push a global 'blasphemy' law
As a new member of the UN Human Rights Council, the US must persuade other countries not to go along.
by the Monitor's Editorial Board
The Christian Science Monitor
October 27, 2009
Remember the Danish "Muhammad cartoons" that set off riots by offended Muslims more than three years ago? The debate pitted freedom of press and speech against notions of freedom from insult of one's religion. It rages still – but now in a forum with international legal implications.
For years, Islamic nations have succeeded in passing "blasphemy" resolutions at the United Nations (in the General Assembly and in its human rights body). The measures call on states to limit religiously offensive language or speech. No one wants their beliefs ridiculed, but the freedom to disagree over faith is what allows for the free practice of religion. The resolutions are misguided, but also only symbolic, because they're nonbinding.
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Related Topics: United Nations
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