It's Not About Freedom, But Double Standards: Pak PM

Islamabad - Pakistani Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf Friday said freedom of expression could not be an excuse for insulting religious beliefs and inciting hatred.

Western governments have frequently said such controversial material is part of freedom of expression, an argument rejected by Muslim leaders.

“Let me make it absolutely clear: this is not about freedom of expression, this is more about hatred, and it also demonstrates blatant double standards of the West,” Pakistani Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf told a rally in the capital Islamabad.

The prime minister said anger, anguish and hurt had increased once it was found that the film was “a deliberate, premeditated act of mischief-mongers based on bias, hatred and prejudice”. “If denying the Holocaust is a crime, then is it not fair and legitimate for Muslims to demand that denigrating and demeaning Islam’s holiest personality is no less a crime?” Raja remarked. He appreciated those in the international community who had joined the Muslims in strongly condemning the film.

He said no law, philosophy or morality permitted defaming of religious personalities.

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