500 Pak lawyers protest against anti-Islam Dutch film

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Lahore, Apr.15 : Hundreds of Pakistani lawyers on Tuesday staged a protest against a Dutch film that satirically depicted the Prophet Mohammad and accused the Koran of inciting violence.

The movie made by Dutch lawmarker Geert Wilders last month, interspersed caricatures of the prophet and the Koran with images of the 9/11 attacks and other Islamist bombings.

Titled "Fitna," a Koranic term sometimes translated as "strife", it also shows an image of the Prophet Mohammad primed to explode.

Reports said that 500 lawyers took part in the demonstration and shouted slogans like "Death is acceptable in the service of the prophet" and "God is greatest".

"Death is acceptable in the path of saving the sanctity of prophet", said a banner.

The protesters marched for about a kilometre from the high court building to the Data Darbar, the shrine of Lahore's patron saint. Manzoor Qadir, the president of the Lahore Bar Association, said that the present government was not doing enough to rein in foreigners indulging in blasphemous acts.

He demanded the expulsion of the Danish envoy and called for a snapping of diplomatic ties with Denmark.

The Dutch government has distanced itself from Wilders' views that the rising number of Muslims in the Netherlands and the rest of Europe threatens democratic societies. In the film, he tried to urge Muslims to tear out "hate-filled" verses from the Koran.

The film concludes with a cartoon of the Prophet Mohammad with a bomb under his turban, originally published in Danish newspapers that triggered violent protests across the Muslim world in 2006 in which at least 50 people were killed.

The Pakistan Senate has condemned efforts to denigrate Islam and promote hatred.

ANI

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