03 August 2015

Saudi ministry: 'Free expression is an abuse of religious rights'

Saudi Arabia has reiterated its call for a global blasphemy law, claiming that free speech leads to violations of "religious and ideological rights."

Abdulmajeed Al-Omari, the director for external relations at the Saudi Ministry of Islamic Affairs, a government body which is tasked with "propagating Islam", was quoted by the Saudi Gazette as saying, "freedom of expression without limits or restrictions would lead to [the] violation and abuse of religious and ideological rights."

He called for insulting religion to be criminalised, and urged for an 'intensification' of efforts aimed at stamping out affronts to religious symbols.

In what amounts to a call for a global law against blasphemy or 'defamation of religion', Al-Omari added that "everyone" must "intensify efforts to criminalise insulting heavenly religions, prophets, holy books, religious symbols and places of worship." [National Secular Society] Read more