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इंडियन आवाज़     03 Dec 2020 12:04:12      انڈین آواز

Muslim countries condemn French insults against Islam

Macron attacked Islam and the Muslim community, accusing Muslims of “separatism”

WEB DESK/ AGENCIES

Several Muslim countries have condemned French President Emmanuel Macron’s insulting statements about Islam and Muslims amid growing calls for boycotting French products.

Macron on Wednesday said he won’t prevent the publishing of insulting cartoons of Prophet Muhammad under the pretext of freedom of expression, a statement that sparked outrage in the Arab and Muslim world.

But the French government and President Emmanuel Macron, instead of taking steps to reduce propaganda attacks on Islam and Muslims, insulting religions and sanctities has been considered a measure of freedom of expression.

Turkey has condemned Macron’s attitude toward Muslims and Islam, with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan saying the French leader needed “mental treatment.”

In Egypt, the Grand imam of Al-Azhar, Sheikh Ahmad el-Tayeb termed the anti-Islam remarks as a “systematic campaign to drag Islam into political battles”.

“We don’t accept to see our symbols and holy sites being a victim to cheap bargaining in electoral battles,” he said in a statement.

Yemeni Minister of Religious Affairs Ahmad Attiya retweeted calls for boycotting French products in response to the anti-Islam campaigns.

In Jordan, the Muslim Brotherhood group described Macron’s statements as “an aggression on the [Islamic] nation and amounted to malice and hateful racism”.

In Libya, Mohammad Zayed, a member of the Presidential Council, condemned Macron’s insults against Islam. “Prophet Muhammad’s status will not be affected by malicious statements or trivial drawings,” he said.

Protesters in the cities of Jarabulus and Tell Abiad burned photos of Macron and held banners defending the prophet.

“Islam is a religion of peace and has no place to terrorism, France is the source of terrorism,” said Wael Hamdu, head of the Tell Abiad local council during the protest. “We didn’t forget the killing of 1.5 million people in Algeria by France.”

In recent weeks, Macron attacked Islam and the Muslim community, accusing Muslims of “separatism”. He described Islam as a “a religion in crisis all over the world”.

This coincided with a provocative move by Charlie Hebdo, a left-wing French magazine infamous for publishing anti-Islamic caricatures, which have drawn widespread anger and outrage across the Muslim world.

Earlier this year, the Charlie Hebdo magazine republished cartoons insulting Islam and Prophet Muhammad.

The caricatures were first published in 2006 by a Danish newspaper Jylllands Posten, sparking a wave of protests.

French president encouraged Islamophobia: Imran khan

The Pakistani prime minster has added his voice to the growing criticism of the French president for “encouraging Islamophobia” following the killing of a teacher who showed cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad to his pupils.

“Hallmark of a leader is he unites human beings… rather than dividing them. This is a time when President [Emmanuel] Macron could have put healing touch, and denied space to extremists rather than creating further polarisation and marginalisation that inevitably leads to radicalization,” Imran Khan said in a series of tweets on Sunday.

“It is unfortunate that he has chosen to encourage Islamophobia by attacking Islam rather than the terrorists who carry out violence, be it Muslims, White Supremacists or Nazi ideologists.”

Sadly, he added, Macron has chosen to deliberately provoke Muslims, including his own citizens, through encouraging the display of blasphemous cartoons targeting Islam, and Prophet Muhammad.

By attacking Islam, Khan said, Macron clearly without having any understanding of it, has attacked and hurt the sentiments of millions of Muslims in Europe and across the world.

Opposition joins protest

Several Pakistani opposition leaders also slammed Macron for “hurting the sentiments” of Muslims across the globe.

“Today, when millions of Muslims across the world are preparing to celebrate the birth anniversary of Prophet Muhammad, events in France have hurt their sentiments,” Maryam Nawaz, the vice president of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz, a key opposition party, said while addressing a huge rally in southwestern Quetta city.

Protest in Bangladesh

Bangadeshi youths also protested against the French government’s support to provocation against Islam, calling for “boycott of French goods.”

The Islamic Youth Movement, a religious group, staged a rally in the capital Dhaka. They rejected the “provocative activities” in the name of freedom, pushing for cutting of diplomatic ties with France.

A virtual campaign on platforms including Facebook and Twitter has also gained momentum.

“Promoting hate speech against any religion or community isn’t freedom of speech,” Hasan Al Mahmud, one of the participants in the online campaign, told Anadolu Agency. “The boycott is a non-violent protest but has a wide socio-cultural significance.”

Meanwhile, the Islami Andolan Bangladesh, a religious party, announced it will hold a protest outside the French embassy in Dhaka on Wednesday.

Iran: French officials’ stance on Islam unacceptable

Tehran

Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh on Saturday blasted the French officials’ stance towards the hideous act of insulting the great Islamic Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) as unacceptable.

The “unwise” excuses offered by the French officials will not fail to address extremism and violence but also stir more hatred than ever before, Khatibzadeh said.

He strongly condemned any insults to holy prophets especially Islam’s Prophet Muhammad as well.

He went on to say that such violent moves and unacceptable measures taken by few extremists have their roots in extremist ideologies and deviative concepts that are generated by the political partners close to the US and the West.

Behaviors undertaken by advocates of such an ideology cannot be used as an excuse to justify insults to the Holy Messenger (of Islam) who is respected by nearly two billion Muslims worldwide, he noted.

“Disrespecting Islamic values and Muslims’ beliefs is unacceptable,” the spokesman stressed.

The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) strongly condemned the insulting statements of the French authorities against the Holy Prophet of Islam (PBUH) on Friday night.

In recent years, the French magazine Charlie Hebdo has repeatedly published insulting cartoons about the Holy Prophet of Islam (PBUH).

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