The parody nation of Pakistan once again made a spectacular fool of itself when the country’s Prime Minister Imran Khan released a statement, making a clarion call to the Muslim leaders in the world to take note of the “growing Islamophobia” in the non-Muslim states, especially Western countries. While asking the Muslim countries to join hands in countering “Islamophobia”, Khan cited the precedence of the European countries in “criminalising the criticism of holocaust”.
Khan made this inference while asserting in his letter that value systems differ for different social, religious and ethnic groups in the world. “For Europeans and Jews, the holocaust, which was the culmination of the Nazi pogrom, has led to many Western, especially European countries, to criminalising any act of criticism or questioning of the holocaust. We understand and respect that,” Khan said.
My letter to leaders of Muslim states to act collectively to counter the growing Islamophobia in non-Muslim states esp Western states causing increasing concern amongst Muslims the world over. pic.twitter.com/OFuaKGu2c1— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) October 28, 2020
It is not the criticism of the holocaust that is criminalised by some European countries, rather it is the holocaust denial that is considered as an offence by several countries. Holocaust denial is a crime in many European countries, and other countries like Israel, USA, Australia etc. On the other hand, criticism of Holocaust is most welcomed, as it was one of the worst incidents in the last century, and there is no question of criminalising Holocaust criticism.
However, when the agenda is to fashion oneself as the leader of the Muslim world and defender of the faith, nuances like these hardly matter to Pakistan PM Imran Khan. Eager to paint other nations as Islamophobic, the PM forgot the difference between Holocaust denial and Holocaust criticism, two completely opposite things.
Imran Khan asks Muslim world to united against “growing Islamophobia”
“Today, we are confronting a growing concern and restlessness amongst our Ummah as they see the rising tide of Islamophobia and attacks, through ridicule and mockery on our beloved Prophet PBUH in the Western world, especially Europe. The recent statements at the leadership level and incidents of desecration of the Holy Quran are the reflections of this increasing Islamophobia that is spreading in European countries where sizeable Muslim population reside,” Khan said.
Khan rationalises the “reactions” from Muslims in European countries
Speaking on the crackdown initiated in the European countries following the horrifying decapitation of Samuel Paty, Khan said that mosques in Europes are being closed, Muslim women are being restricted from exercising their right to wear clothing of their choice even as nuns and Christian pastors continue to display their religious clothing. In a bid to whip up anti-European sentiments among the Muslim world, Khan also alleged that Muslims are widely discriminated in the European countries.
In a clear and unabashed attempt to rationalise the violence inflicted by resentful Islamists, Khan pinned the blame on European countries and citizens for provoking Muslims by hurting their religious sentiments. “As a result, a dangerous cycle of actions and reactions are set in motion. Hurtful actions result in reactions from Muslim as they see their faith and their beloved Prophet targeted which results in further discriminatory actions by governments against Muslim populations in their states, resulting in the marginalization of Muslims and the creating of space for radical, far-right groups to exploit the situation,” Khan said.
Pakistani PM Imran Khan justifies the beheading of the Paris teacher
This is not the first time that Pakistani PM Imran Khan had attempted to defend the beheading of the Paris teacher. In a video statement at UNGA, he tried to justify what had happened in France and said, “The Prophet lives in our hearts. When he is ridiculed, when he is insulted, it hurts… We human beings understand one thing: The pain of the heart is far, far, far more hurtful than physical pain. And that’s why the Muslims react to this.” He further added that people from the west do not understand the sentiments attached to the Prophet. He also compared the pain suffered by the Jewish during the holocaust to the pain induced in Muslims by insulting the Prophet Muhammad.
In a tweet, he said, “Hallmark of a leader is he unites human beings, as Mandela did, rather than dividing them. This is a time when Pres Macron could have put healing touch & denied space to extremists rather than creating further polarisation & marginalisation that inevitably leads to radicalisation.”
French President Macron promises strict action against the menace of Islamic extremism
Khan’s statement has been released in the wake of the sharp remarks made by French President Emmanuel Macron following the death of a Paris teacher, who was beheaded by an Islamist for showcasing the caricatures of Prophet Muhammad in his class. In a moving tribute to Samuel Paty, the deceased teacher, French President hailed him as “quiet hero” and called upon the need to build an Islam of Enlightenment” in the country, an expression that raised the hackles of many leaders in the Muslim world.
Since the killing of the Paris teacher, stringent measures have been adopted by many European countries, particularly France, to curb the menace of Islamism. Several mosques, believed to be the centres of breeding radicalism and extremism were temporarily closed down by the country. Such measures have been deemed by the leaders of the Muslim world as promoting “Islamophobia” and they have sternly criticised Macron for the same.