ICLA Ally Contributes to Victory In Professor Armin Geus Case In Germany
The trial of Prof Armin Geus has been shut down following an intervention at the recent Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) meeting in Warsaw by the German citizens Movement and ICLA ally Bürgerbewegung Pax Europa (BPE).
The Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has been lobbying to shut down free speech in the West for some time now. It claims that its efforts in this regard are done in the name of religious tolerance. However, the record of religious tolerance in many OIC countries leaves a lot to be desired. Many OCSE countries are guilty of extreme forms of religious oppression. In reality the only guarantee of freedom of religion is freedom of speech itself, exactly the freedom that the OIC wants to curtail. Perhaps the reason that they oppose freedom of expression is because it gets in the way of their own oppression of religious minorities. They would much prefer this freedom of expression to be referred to as blasphemy and those that practice it, heretics.
In the background of OIC hatred towards the concept of Free Speech Professor Geus’ book Die Krankheit des Propheten (“The Illness of the Prophet”) had been reported to the German authorities in the city of Marburg for “Incitement to hatred against peoples”. This complaint was in line with the continuous agitation coming from the OIC itself.
The following is the text of the BPE intervention in Warsaw:
Freedom of expression – Silencing intellectuals
We bring to the attention of the participating States, in particular the German delegation, the case of German professor Armin Geus who a year ago wrote a book called Die Krankheit des Propheten (“The Illness of the Prophet”) and who has been reported to the German authorities in the city of Marburg for “Incitement to hatred against peoples” and “Insulting faiths, religious communities and philosophical associations”. It is obvious that apart from the so-called “political correctness”, there is a campaign to establish “scientific correctness”, which is aimed at stifling the constitutional right to freedom of scientific inquiry, especially when aimed at the foundation of Islam.1
BPE urges Germany not to give in to intimidation and as a result stifle free thought a well as scientific study.
BPE reminds ODIHR of its commitments: “…guaranteeing the freedom of artistic creation […] form[s] part of the human dimension of the CSCE. They consider that independent intellectual […] life is crucial for the maintenance of free societies and democratic institutions.” (Moscow 1991).
BPE encourages ODIHR to implement its commitments regarding these fundamental freedoms.
We hope that the BPE intervention helped achieve this significant outcome which is a victory for all who value and campaign for freedom of speech in the world today. The instigators of the outrageous legal action against Professor Geus remain undeterred and are said to be appealing the decision. It is outrageous that vexatious litigations of this kind are not treated for what they are and dismissed as soon as they begin. ICLA and its allies will be monitoring the situation closely.
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