Month: April 2015

The week in “blasphemy” news #12

The Nanak Shah Fakir controversy spreads from India to the UK, with two British cinema chains canceling the film. The United States sees a “blasphemy” protest in response to a political cartoon, in a tight mayoral race for West New York. Copenhagen faces fresh blasphemy terror threats. And police in Turkey are wasting their time investigating a cake shaped like a Koran.

We learn that criticising religion is rarely “punching down”, Egypt’s “blasphemy” trials continue, and there’s further analysis on the blasphemy fascism and wider extremist Islamism being imported into Bangladesh. Continue reading »

The week in “blasphemy” news #11

An author drugged and detained against her will in a psychiatric hospital after Salman Rushdie comments. A graffiti artist facing religious “offence” charges over a mural. An Ahmaddiya newspaper manager is being prosecuted for putting out an Ahmaddiya newspaper. And Jesus Christ is back in Kerala.

Your Friday round-up of the past 7 days in “blasphemy” news and views. Continue reading »

The week in “blasphemy” news #10

Malaysia’s revised “sedition” laws crack down on free speech, including new provisions aimed at “protecting Islam”. Turkey prosecutes journalists for illustrating Charlie Hebdo columns with Charlie Hebdo illustrations. In Egypt, a TV preacher who reportedly preaches that the Quran should not be read literally, faces prosecution for “insulting religion”. And in Kuwait, a cartoonist faces “heresy” charges because Muslims can’t be superheroes apparently.

A court in Pakistan denies bail to a woman accused of blasphemy on the grounds that her trial is nearly over – but it’s taken three years to get to this point, and this was her fourth application for bail! In India, Sikh students march in protest against an upcoming movie that depicts a Sikh Guru Nanak.

And the Russian Orthodox Church’s patented War on Theatre continues, spreading from Wagner to Wilde.

Our tenth week of news and views on “blasphemy” laws and related human rights violations and nonsense. Continue reading »

The week in “blasphemy” news #9

This week, in Bangladesh another atheist blogger has been hacked to death by machete, due to his “anti-Islamic” writing, say the killers. In Kuwait, a TV presenter gets death threats, rape threats, and a police investigation over a video making jokes at the expense of extremists. Morocco may be increasing penalties for “blasphemy” convictions. In Russia, an opera director is fired by the Ministry for Culture, which denies doing the bidding of the Russian Orthodox Church, although it is obviously doing exactly that.

Kuwait has a plan to ban blasphemers from travelling to the country. There’s Sikh-flavoured blasphemy in India because a new film about Guru Nanak depicts its subject, Guru Nanak. And a new queer Jesus shows the importance of “blasphemy” for minority voices within religious communities.

It’s the ninth of our weekly round-ups of blasphemy news and views. Continue reading »