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April 18, 2021

PM wants West to ban disrespect for Prophet (PBUH)

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April 18, 2021

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Saturday called on the Western governments that have outlawed any negative comment on the Holocaust to use the same standards to penalise those who deliberately spread a message of hate against Muslims by abusing the Holy Prophet (PBUH).

He also made it clear that the government took action against Tehreek-e-Labbaik Pakistan after its members challenged the state writ and attacked the public and law enforcers.

In a series of tweets, the prime minister said: “Those in the West, including extreme right politicians, who deliberately indulge in such abuse and hate under guise of freedom of speech clearly lack moral sense and courage to apologise to the 1.3 billion Muslims for causing this hurt. We demand an apology from these extremists.”

He added: “Let me make clear to people here and abroad: our government only took action against TLP under our anti-terrorist law when they challenged the writ of the state and used street violence and attacking the public and law enforcers. No one can be above the law and the Constitution.”

Prime Minister Imran Khan also had a message for the extremists abroad, saying: “My message to extremists abroad who indulge in Islamophobia and racist slurs to hurt and cause pain to 1.3 billion Muslims across the globe: we Muslims have the greatest love and respect for our Prophet (SAW) who lives in our hearts. We cannot tolerate any such disrespect and abuse”.

Denying the Holocaust is illegal in several European countries — including Germany and France — and offenders can be jailed.

Meanwhile, Federal Minister Fawad Chaudhry said that the proscribing of the TLP was purely Pakistan’s internal decision.

He rejected outright the perception of any kind of foreign pressure on the issue of the TLP and noted that the government had handled the protests of the TLP in the best possible manner. He said the situation had normalised now across the country.

Fawad said Prime Minister Imran Khan had already issued a statement and tweet in which he had appreciated the bravery of police and law-enforcement agencies. He said the government had to close social media for a few hours, but it was inevitable to counter the tactics of the miscreants.

He said that every Muslim was ready to sacrifice his life for the honour of the Holy Prophet Peace Be Upon Him, but anybody using the issue for getting political mileage was unfortunate.

He contended that in the past foreign hand was found in sectarian violence in Karachi and nobody could rule out the enemy countries’ hand in the recent violence in the name of religion.

The minister said some parties might have been playing in the hands of the enemy and such incidents could weaken the country.

He appreciated Punjab, Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa police and security agencies, which gelled together and countered the threat very effectively.

Fawad said that the government was committed to capacity-building of the law-enforcement agencies. He said that Pakistan was the fifth largest country and one of the seven atomic powers of the world and it should not be taken as a weak nation, which had defeated the scourge of terrorism successfully.

The minister emphasised that in democracy everybody had his viewpoint, but no one could be allowed to blackmail the state with the use of force. He also lauded the Ministry of Interior and Religious Affairs ministry and the provincial governments for handling the situation with coordination.