For blasphemy. Qatar is pushing for a new law in the Arab League that will allow prosecutions for blasphemy even if they occur in other nations. Under its provisions, all forms of defamation, derision or denigration of religions and prophets will be considered crimes. Gulf News reports (emphasis added).
“The main feature of the draft is that it gives every state the right to put on trial those who abuse and hold in contempt religions even if they are outside the country,” Ebrahim Mousa Al Hitmi, the Qatari justice ministry assistant undersecretary for legal affairs …
“The law does not interfere in any way with the freedom of opinion and expression which is well protected and guaranteed. All penal laws in Arab countries criminalise defamation of religions but there are no specific sanctions when an abuser is outside the country. Therefore, the main goal of this law is to deter all forms of defamation of religions and give each country that ratifies it the right to file lawsuits against those who offend religions, even if they are not residents,”
Yeah, right. (Hat Tip to Ed Brayton at Culture Wars)
In related news, the Student’s Union at the London School of Economics evicted two students from their societies fair for wearing Jesus and Mo T-Shirts.
According to an editorial the Telegraph:
There’s a row going on at the London School of Economics (LSE) after two atheist students were banned from wearing a T-shirt which depicted the Prophet Mohammed and Jesus. The pair were told by student union apparatchiks they would have to leave the university’s societies fair unless they covered up the t-shirts, which carried a cartoon from the website Jesus and Mo, because they were “provocative”.
Because we all have a right not to be provoked at a university and to expect folks in other countries to do what we want.