BFF-30 Iran’s Rouhani warns insulting Prophet may encourage ‘violence’

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Iran’s Rouhani warns insulting Prophet may encourage ‘violence’

TEHRAN, Oct 28, 2020 (BSS/AFP) – Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani on
Wednesday warned that insulting the Prophet Mohammed may encourage
“violence and bloodshed” following Paris’ defence of the publication
of cartoons depicting the prophet.

“Insulting the prophet is no achievement. It’s immoral. It’s
encouraging violence,” Rouhani said in a televised speech during the
weekly cabinet meeting.

“It’s a surprise that this would come from those claiming culture
and democracy, that they would somehow, even if unintentionally,
encourage violence and bloodshed,” he added.

French President Emmanuel Macron has strongly defended secular
values and the right to mock religion following the murder of a French
schoolteacher who had shown his class cartoons of the Prophet
Mohammed.

Macron’s comments triggered protests and a call to boycott French
goods in some Muslim-majority countries.

Rouhani said that “the West should understand that… insulting the
prophet is insulting all Muslims, all prophets, all human values, and
trampling ethics”.

He added that “every single European is in debt to the prophet, as
he was the teacher of humanity”.

Rouhani also called on the West to “stop interfering in Muslims’
internal affairs” if it “truly seeks to achieve peace, equality, calm
and security in today’s societies”.

Iran on Tuesday summoned a senior French envoy, the charge
d’affaires, to protest the “unacceptable behaviour of the French
authorities”, after a chorus of criticism aimed at Macron by top
Iranian officials in recent days.

The parliamentary bloc of the powerful Lebanese group Hezbollah,
which is close to Iran, on Wednesday also issued a statement against
insults targeting the Prophet Mohammed.

It slammed the “moral and ethical bankruptcy that groups, states and
leaders are suffering from today”, adding that intentionally
ridiculing the prophet revealed “malicious and hostile intentions”.

The statement did not mention France or Macron, but accused the
states and groups in question of “abusing freedom of expression… by
suppressing others and preventing them from expressing their
convictions and beliefs”.

BSS/AFP/MRU/2300hrs