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Islamic countries try to ban blasphemy

 

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton slammed an effort by Islamic countries to ban religious criticism last week.

The Organization of the Islamic Conference pressured the U.N. Human Rights Council to ban defamation of religion, like this cartoon that inspired the measure. Secretary Clinton fired back, "Some claim that the best way to protect the freedom of religion is to implement so-called anti-defamation policies that would restrict freedom of expression and the freedom of religion," she said. "I strongly disagree."

Although she is opposed to the negative depictions of certain faiths, a blanket ban of discourse isn't the right path, she said; instead countries should focus on tolerance.

Her statement came as the State Department announced its annual report on international religious freedom. The OIC has 56 member states, 18 of which were listed in the report as "countries where violations of religious freedom have been noteworthy."

The ridiculous measure would lump Bill Maher, Monty Python and George Carlin in with the likes of Slobodan Milosevic, Augusto Pinochet and Omar al-Bashir.

ADAM JAN/AFP/Getty Images

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