DAVAO CITY— Muslims across Mindanao condemned as blasphemous the cover of the controversial French weekly magazine Charlie Hebdo showing a weeping prophet Muhammad holding up a sign saying “Je suis Charlie” (“I am Charlie”).
At least in Marawi City, the heartland of the Maranao Muslims, residents staged a protest rally on Monday dubbed as “No Apology March” to condemn the magazine cover.
The cover came out days after gunmen attacked its office in Paris and shot dead a dozen personnel, including its cartoonist.
“It’s blasphemous because it violates the teachings of Islam. Depicting our beloved prophet Muhammad is a form of idolatry and pornography,” said Agakhan M. Sharief, chairman of the Bangsamoro National Movement For Peace and Development on Thursday.
Sharief said “they can write, speak against our religion but not in an obscene manner or creating images for our prophet which are forbidden in Islam.”
“We only assert our rights as Muslims and to correct the misconceptions about Islam,” said Omar-Ali Mangondato Sharief, organizer of the Marawi City protest rally.
“We appeal to the world humanity to address the roots of this issue which are religious intolerance and lack of respect to religions,” he emphasized.
Suara Bangsamoro, a Moro group in Mindanao, also condemned the magazine portrayal saying “it is an insult to prophet Muhammad.”
Jerome Aba, spokesperson of Suara Bangsamoro, said lampooning prophet Muhammad “perpetuates bigotry and discrimination to the highest degree.”
“This provocative and insulting action only destroys Islam,” said Aba, as he claim that there is a campaign against Islam in the West. He said this campaign “is to be blamed for Europe’s migration policy.”
“The European governments use the migrant policy for cheap labor, and yet workers are deprived of conducive atmosphere for migrants and minorities to live,” added Aba.
He said that in Europe “Muslims are very discriminated because of anti-Islamic laws like banning the wearing of hijab, nika, for women, among others.”
“The government itself perpetuates and sow discrimination,” said Aba. (davaotoday.com)