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19-06-2012 - Gulfnews/By Habib Toumi

Death penalty for blogger urged

A Salafist society in Bahrain is pushing for the death penalty against a blogger who has reportedly posted remarks deemed offensive to Prophet Mohammad [PBUH] and his wife Aysha.

"The death penalty will help preserve the status of the religion and will protect the society from sedition," Al Asala Society said in a statement one day after Bahraini authorities said they arrested a man who repeatedly posted the "offensive remarks", using several accounts.

"This man has a twisted and distorted mind and he should be put to death for his corrupt beliefs and postings."

MP Abdul Halim Murad said that he wanted the government to endorse a draft law that stipulates the death penalty for religion offenders.

"Under this law, anyone found insulting the prophet [PBUH] or his wife Aisha will be sentenced to death or given a life sentence," the lawmaker representing Al Asala in the lower chamber of the bicameral parliament, said.

"I have already spoken to the government on endorsing the draft because it has robust religious and legal premises, protects the society and upholds the respect that all Muslims have for their prophet," he said.

The MP presented the draft after the Kuwaiti parliament endorsed a move to impose the death penalty for anyone caught insulting God or Prophet Mohammad [PBUH] or his wife Aisha or his companions.

The parliament, dominated by a strong alliance between tribal and Islamist members, pushed forward the amendment to the penal code after a Kuwaiti blogger was arrested for reportedly insulting the prophet and Aysha.

However, the draft, opposed by liberals, needed the endorsement of the country's Emir and reports have suggested that it would be sent back to the parliament.

The move is likely to be applauded by the liberals, but will further strains relations between the parliament and the government.

At a forum on the status of Prophet Mohammad [PBUH] held on Tuesday evening, MP Mohammad Hayef, a staunch supporter of the proposed law, said that the prime minister could be grilled if the government did not endorse it.

MP Waleed Al Tabtabai said that the draft would be carried to the next parliament if the current one is dissolved as expected following the series of bitter stand-offs with the government.


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