//Malaysia: Stop Mockery of Religion

Malaysia: Stop Mockery of Religion

Kuala Lumpur, Feb 10 (Prensa Latina) Malaysian Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi called on Friday to stop the mockery over any religion in order to avoid crisis as the one triggered in the wake of publication of cartoons of Prophet Mohammad by European dailies.

We have to put an end to the mockery about any religion or symbol deemed sacred by believers, said Badawi while opening a conference of Islam scholars.

Badawi, who currently presides over the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OCI), warned that Western policy being pursued in Iraq, Afghanistan and Palestine is causing frustration among the Muslim community, opening an enormous gap with this world.

The head of the Malaysian Government stressed that in the West there is a false perception that Islam is a synonym of violence, with Western citizens considering Muslim people as terrorist.

They think that Osama bin Laden speaks in the name of Islam and Islam followers.

This evil image places a stigma on Muslim people, and this is an extended perception in Western society, he stressed.

Discussing wrong perceptions which hinder relations between the West and the Muslim world is the objective of a two-day meeting attended by about 60 intellectuals, religious leaders and politicians from Muslim, European countries and the US.

In this context, the government of Kuala Lumpur considered a crime to publish, reproduce, circulate, distribute or introduce cartoons of Prophet Mohammad in the country.

On Thursday, the Ministry of Interior issued a statement saying that the measure will immediately come into effect in order to prevent cartoons from sparking uneasiness among the Malaysian people and lead to a breach of peace.

The twelve cartoons which so much infuriated Muslim community were first published in Denmark in Sept, 2005, and reproduced by other Western media.

http://www.plenglish.com/article.asp?ID={CA27FC41-969D-465F-BF08-E4FF7DCBED11}&language=EN