Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Saudi Arabia: Stop Trials for ‘Insulting’ Islam

Courts in Jeddah should dismiss cases against a Saudi web critic and a Turkish barber charged with “insulting” Islam, an unequivocal violation of freedom of expression protected under international law, Human Rights Watch said today.

The Saudi man used his website to criticize the religious police while the Turkish barber is accused of cursing the name of God.
“Criminalizing speech on grounds that it is insulting might appease some people, but it violates the fundamental human right of free speech,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch.
“The Saudi government uses these laws primarily to silence its critics.”


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