EU resists push to limit free speech at UN meeting

Islamic proposals to ban criticism of religion, which have gathered strength since the publication of cartoons of the prophet Muhammad two years ago, threaten to derail an already troubled U.N. anti-racism conference planned for next year.

The European Union rejects suggestions by Algeria — backed by other Muslim and African countries — that limits on free speech are needed to stop the publication of offensive articles and images.

Supporters of the proposal, who have been pushing for such a ban to be included in international anti-discrimination charters, want it discussed in April at a high-level United Nations anti-racism meeting in Geneva.

But European diplomats say that is out of the question.

news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20081217/ap_on_re_us/un_religion_free_speech;_ylt=AmWYpqoJZLFuigoFg6JGzeQ7Xs8F

I am surprised that Moslems can move for this with a straight face. In Saudi Arabia, for example, Christianity is outlawed. There are no churches in the country, and people will be arrested if they have a Bible. In some Moslem countries converting to Christianity are to be punished with the death penalty according to the law. Only their own religion should be protected?

I’m just happy that the EU is willing to protect freedom of speech. Given their hate speech laws, I had been worried about their values.

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