Channel Four Censors Jesus and Mo Cartoons in Deference to Mohammed Shafiq .
Channel Four censored a Jesus and Mo cartoon last night.
“This is not about freedom of speech – this is about the behaviour of a parliamentary candidate”: Mohammed Shafiq from the Ramadhan Foundation says Lib Dem Maajid Nawaz has offended Muslims. Channel Four News.
What is the background to this censorship?
The Huffington Post says,
The row began when Quilliam Foundation’s Nawaz, whose think-tank was credited with Tommy Robinson’s departure from the EDL, tweeted a ‘Jesus and Mo’ cartoon, stating he was not offended by the content.
Nawaz has since said he has received “credible” death threats over the tweet.
The cartoon was the same as the one worn on t-shirts by the LSE Atheism society, who were told by the University to remove the t-shirts or cover them up when they hosted a stall at the university Freshers’ Fair.
Nawaz was challenged over the tweet by Shafiq, along with Muslim TV commentator Mo Ansar and Bradford Respect MP George Galloway.
Apprarently the two have kissed and made up (Liberal Voice),
Maajid Nawaz, the Liberal Democrat Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Hampstead and Kilburn and Mohammed Shafiq, member of the Liberal Democrats, have released a joint statement:
“We wish to make a statement about the recent concern expressed over issues related to conflicting views on depictions of Prophet Muhammad.
“We recognise that, when it comes to this question, some Muslims of various persuasions may take different views. However, we also recognise that there are many Muslims who have taken offence, and we assert that images of the spiritual leaders of all religions should be deemed to be respectful. We also respect the freedom of every member of the Liberal Democrats on either side of this debate who feels offended by tone or language to make representations to the Liberal Democrats as is their democratic right.
“We are both Liberals and support the principle of freedom of speech. But we also understand the importance of respect for others’ views and of moderation of language. In so far as this second principle of moderate language has been breached in the heat and passion of the current debate, we regret this and call for all those who have differing views to ensure that any debate which continues on this subject should use language and attitudes which conform to Liberal standards of respect and moderation.
“We now call on those on both sides of this argument to return to moderate debate, free of insult and threat and we do so because we believe this is in the interests of our Party, of the wider Muslim community in Britain and of the principles of peace to which Islam is committed.”
Maajid Nawaz, Liberal Democrat Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Hampstead and Kilburn.
Mohammed Shafiq, member of the Liberal Democrats.
Shafiq showed scant regard for freedom of speech on Channel Four.
He managed to say, in the allusive and imprecise way that is typical of Islamist bigots when they try to appeal to a liberal-minded audience, that nobody should be allowed to show images of the ‘prophet’ Mohamed.
On the basis of 21,000 people signing a petition calling for Mawaz to be removed a Liberal Demcorat candidate (a small number in the sum of things) he also mentioned that “Muslim leaders” were having a special meeting with Nick Clegg today.
This, we learnt during the programme, had been changed.
It would be a talk with Paddy Ashdown (no doubt on the basis of his experience in the aftermath of the Balkans civil war).
In fact they have not been reconciled at all.
If Nick Clegg were hoping that a joint statement by the Liberal Democrats at the centre of the Prophet Mohammed cartoon row would defuse the situation, then he is going to be disappointed.
IBTimes UK has learned that Mohammed Shafiq – who led the campaign for candidate Maajid Nawaz to be deselected over a tweet about the cartoon – is to take part in a meeting with members of the Lib Dem leadership about the controversy on Wednesday.
Critics of Nawaz are expected to insist again that he should not be allowed to stand for the party in Hampstead and Fulham at the 2015 general election. The row ignited when Nawaz tweeted a link to a cartoon of the Islamic prophet Mohammed earlier this month. Shafiq and others claimed the cartoon offended Islam.
The renewed call for Nawaz to be dropped came just hours after he and Shafiq issued a joint statement designed to foster unity. Death threats against Nawaz had sparked a police investigation.
More on IBT.
We are concerned that Channel Four’s censorship is not yet worthy of the demands of Mohammed Shafiq.
A special committee of Islamic scholars should no doubt be set up to supervise the Channel’s output, and indeed all the media, to ensure that no Muslim is ever offended.
This will have to go!
More Jesus and Mo (while you’re permitted to look at it): here.
Meanwhile Maajiid Nawaz has made a dignified defence of his actions in the Guardian, “• Why I’m speaking up for Islam against the loudmouths who have hijacked it“.