Campaign To Unblock The Blog

20 03 2006

Last week, Michelle Malkin blogged about action by Pakistan’s government to block blogs that published the Mohammed Cartoons.

Dr. Awab Alvi e-mailed her about a campaign by free-speech activists across Pakistan to protest the censorship. From Dr. Alvi’s site:

LAUNCHED BY THE ALVI-E TEAM (Awab Alvi & Omer Alvie) on March 3rd 2006, this is an online campaign to support free speech of Pakistani bloggers and internet free speech in general. Support our cause by copying the banner code to your web site. Since 28th February (2006), Pakistani Bloggers’ Freedom of Speech has been under attack by some, if not all, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) who has chosen to block all blogs hosted on the blogspot.com domain. Political pressure groups have protested to the government to block those web sites displaying the controversial cartoon images of Prophet Muhammed (PBUH) that were hosted on the net. But instead of blocking specific sites, ISPs have simply blacklisted the entire domain, causing thousands of blogs to be inaccessible for viewing in Pakistan.

It is our point of view, that any censorship of blogs is unacceptable, be it a few offensive sites inciting a hateful stereotype, or hundreds of blogs protesting controversial caricatures or even the thousands of sites that remain indifferent to the issue.

Plus + Ultra is one of the banned blogs.

UPDATE! 10:00 pm EST

Several media outlets are paying a bit of attention to it:
NYSun, ABC News, and FoxNews but the blogosphere is all over it.

Junkyard Blog weighs in

Mr. Rahman’s plight deserves attention. He deserves religious freedom. Afghans deserve freedom to woship as they please and should not be subject to the laws of a religion they don’t serve. Writing Islam into Afghanistan’s constitution—and Iraq’s—may yet undo all the good work our troops have done in both.

International Christian Concern calls on Afghan President Hamid Karzai to pardon Rahman:

The Washington-DC based human rights group, International Christian Concern (ICC) http://www.persecution.org is calling on Afghanistan’s President Hamid Karzai to defend religious freedom and freedom of conscience in his country by pardoning Abdul Rahman. Rahman is facing the death penalty for apostasy (rejecting Islam).

As we do not believe the people of Afghanistan would have ratified a constitution that contradicts itself, ICC urges the government of Afghanistan to consider that Islam is not in conflict with this portion of the UN’s Declaration on Human Rights. In fact, the Qur’an itself supports freedom of conscience in view of Allah’s absolute authority as judge:

Surah 2:256 – “There is no compulsion in religion…”

Surah 16:82 – “Then, if they turn away, your duty (O Muhammad) is only to convey (the Message) in a clear way.”

Surah 42:48 – “But if they turn away (from Islam). We have not sent you as a Hafiz (watcher, protector) over them (to take care of their deeds and to recompense them). Your duty is to convey (the Message)…”

Surah 88:21-22 – “And so, (O Prophet!) exhort them, your task is only to exhort; you cannot compel them to believe.”

If even Muhammad was commanded not to carry out punishments on those who turned away from Islam, how much less should Afghanistan’s courts prosecute anyone who decides freely to convert to a different religion?

Sign a petition supporting Rahman. And here’s an e-mail campaign to President Bush.

Others for unblocking blogs: Michelle Malkin, Conservative Outpost, Capital Region People, Below The Beltway, Independent Conservative

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