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Pakistan president urges UN to criminalize blasphemy after cartoons furor

[JURIST] Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf [official website, BBC profile] said Saturday he will lobby the United Nations [official website] and the Organization of the Islamic Conference [official website] to make blasphemy an internationally-recognized criminal offense in the wake of controversy surrounding the worldwide republication of caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad [JURIST news archive] that first appeared in the Danish Jyllands-Posten newspaper in September.

A spokesman told reporters that Musharraf made the decision after meeting with religious scholars and quoted him as saying that "No Muslim can tolerate blasphemy against the Holy Prophet." Musharraf also said his government would not tolerate the burning of public property in protests related to the controversy. Sometimes-violent demonstrations [JURIST news archive] over the cartoons have erupted in Pakistan in recent weeks, leading to several deaths. The Peninsula
has more.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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