The President of Maldives, H.E. Mr Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom has said that the publication of caricatures in the French magazine, Charlie Hebdo, insulting the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), is an attempt to incite religious hatred by offending the many millions of Muslims worldwide, and that it will only advance the message of radicals and terrorists.
In a statement issued by the President’s Office this morning, the President condemned Charlie Hebdo for insulting Islam.
“Freedom of expression is not a license to creating hatred, and promoting anti-Islamic sentiments and Islamophobia. Insulting the religious beliefs of one-third of humanity should not be tolerated in any society or by any Government. Instead such criminal activities should be stopped and actions should be taken in a speedy manner to prevent such activities.”
President Yameen stressed the importance of promoting a culture of respect and tolerance as a means of countering Islamophobia and radicalism. Calling upon Muslim leaders around the world to unite in protecting Islam and promoting its true values of peace and tolerance, the Maldivian President said:
“The Maldives has been advocating the need for cultivating a culture of respect, where freedom of speech is protected in a way that does not promote hatred through ridicule and insults.”