Oct 31, 2020, 10:09 AM
Journalist ID: 2379
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Freedom is for elevating humanity not for blasphemy

Tehran, Oct 31, IRNA - Leaders of religious minorities in Iran condemned the remarks made by French President Emmanuel Macron against Great Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) on the pretext of freedom of expression.

Blasphemy will hurt other religions' sanctities and only lead to war and bloodshed, the leaders of religious minorities said at a meeting held at a church in Tehran on Friday afternoon.

Macron's remarks amounted to desecration, they stated.

Bishop of Assyrian Church of the East in Tehran Mar Narsai Benjamin delivered a speech to the meeting and described Macron's remarks as vicious.

Such remark made by president of a country which introduces itself as modern and civilized is just a bad and cruel move to insult all religions and all freedom-seeking persons across the world.

The bishop said such moves invite humanity to chaos, turmoil, war, massacre, looting and disorder.

Another leader of religious minorities Younes Hamami Lalehzar, leader of Iranian Jewish community, addressed the meeting saying that all divine religions carry the message of kindness and friendship and preserve value of humanity.  

Insult to religions is not acceptable from individuals let alone a president, Lalehzar said.

He further expressed satisfaction over living in a country - Iran - with rich civilization where all followers of religions live in co-existence while they respect each other despite their cultural differences.

Then, the message of Armenian Orthodox primate of the diocese of Tehran, Archbishop Sebuh Sarkisian, was read out to the meeting.

In his message, the Archbishop described the issue of respect as basic principle of human values.

If people do not pay attention to those principles set by God, tranquility and peace will shatter, the Archbishop noted.

He stressed that religious minorities have been living in Iran since long years ago while they have never insulted their sanctities.

At the end of the meeting, the leaders of Iranian religious minorities issued a statement in condemnation of French president's move to support blasphemy to Prophet Mohammad.

In a related development, Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has strongly condemned the insulting statements of the French authorities against the Holy Prophet of Islam (PBUH).

In recent years, the French magazine Charlie Hebdo has repeatedly published insulting cartoons about the Holy Prophet of Islam (PBUH).

But the French government and President Emmanuel Macron, instead of taking steps to reduce propaganda attacks on Islam and Muslims, insulting religions and sanctities interpreted it in the context of freedom of expression, according to OIC.

Also in September, the act to burn a copy of the Holy Quran - the Muslims' holy book- during anti-Islam demonstration in the city of Malmo, south of Sweden, hurt the sentiments of all freethinkers and Muslims.

Translated by: Marjan Heydari Rad

Edited by: Safar Sarabi

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