Author Topic: Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton  (Read 3366 times)

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Richpo64

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Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton
« on: November 30, 2007, 12:53:16 PM »
Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton
Nov 30, 10:17 AM (ET)
By MOHAMED OSMAN

 

KHARTOUM, Sudan (AP) - Thousands of Sudanese, many armed with clubs and knives, rallied Friday in a central square and demanded the execution of a British teacher convicted of insulting Islam for allowing her students to name a teddy bear "Muhammad."

The protesters streamed out of mosques after Friday sermons, as pickup trucks with loudspeakers blared messages against Gillian Gibbons, the teacher who was sentenced Thursday to 15 days in prison and deportation. She avoided the more serious punishment of 40 lashes.

They massed in central Martyrs Square outside the presidential palace, where hundreds of riot police were deployed. They did not try to stop the rally, which lasted about an hour.

"Shame, shame on the U.K.," protesters chanted.
 
They called for Gibbons' execution, saying, "No tolerance: Execution," and "Kill her, kill her by firing squad."

The women's prison where Gibbons is being held is far from the square.

Several hundred protesters, not openly carrying weapons, marched about a mile away to Unity High School, where Gibbons worked. They chanted slogans outside the school, which is closed and under heavy security, then marched toward the nearby British Embassy. They were stopped by security forces two blocks away from the embassy.

The protest arose despite vows by Sudanese security officials the day before, during Gibbons' trial, that threatened demonstrations after Friday prayers would not take place. Some of the protesters carried green banners with the name of the Society for Support of the Prophet Muhammad, a previously unknown group.

Many protesters carried clubs, knives and axes - but not automatic weapons, which some have brandished at past government-condoned demonstrations. That suggested Friday's rally was not organized by the government.
 
 
A Muslim cleric at Khartoum's main Martyrs Mosque denounced Gibbons during one sermon, saying she intentionally insulted Islam. He did not call for protests, however.

"Imprisoning this lady does not satisfy the thirst of Muslims in Sudan. But we welcome imprisonment and expulsion," the cleric, Abdul-Jalil Nazeer al-Karouri, a well-known hard-liner, told worshippers.

"This an arrogant woman who came to our country, cashing her salary in dollars, teaching our children hatred of our Prophet Muhammad," he said.

Britain, meanwhile, pursued diplomatic moves to free Gibbons. Prime Minister Gordon Brown spoke with a member of her family to convey his regret, his spokeswoman said.

"He set out his concern and the fact that we were doing all we could to secure her release," spokeswoman Emily Hands told reporters.

Most Britons expressed shock at the verdict by a court in Khartoum, alongside hope it would not raise tensions between Muslims and non-Muslims in Britain.

"One of the good things is the U.K. Muslims who've condemned the charge as completely out of proportion," said Paul Wishart, 37, a student in London.

"In the past, people have been a bit upset when different atrocities have happened and there hasn't been much voice in the U.K. Islamic population, whereas with this, they've quickly condemned it."

Muhammad Abdul Bari, secretary-general of the Muslim Council of Britain, accused the Sudanese authorities of "gross overreaction."

"This case should have required only simple common sense to resolve. It is unfortunate that the Sudanese authorities were found wanting in this most basic of qualities," he said.

The Muslim Public Affairs Committee, a political advocacy group, said the prosecution was "abominable and defies common sense."

The Federation of Student Islamic Societies, which represents 90,000 Muslim students in Britain and Ireland, called on Sudan's government to free Gibbons, saying she had not meant to cause offense.

"We are deeply concerned that the verdict to jail a schoolteacher due to what's likely to be an innocent mistake is gravely disproportionate," said the group's president, Ali Alhadithi.

The Ramadhan Foundation, a Muslim youth organization, said Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir should pardon the teacher.

"The Ramadhan Foundation is disappointed and horrified by the conviction of Gillian Gibbons in Sudan," said spokesman Mohammed Shafiq.

Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, spiritual leader of the world's 77 million Anglicans, said Gibbons' prosecution and conviction was "an absurdly disproportionate response to what is at worst a cultural faux pas."

Foreign Secretary David Miliband summoned the Sudanese ambassador late Thursday to express Britain's disappointment with the verdict. The Foreign Office said Britain would continue diplomatic efforts to achieve "a swift resolution" to the crisis.

Gibbons was arrested Sunday after another staff member at the school complained that she had allowed her 7-year-old students to name a teddy bear Muhammad. Giving the name of the Muslim prophet to an animal or a toy could be considered insulting.

The case put Sudan's government in an embarrassing position - facing the anger of Britain on one side and potential trouble from powerful Islamic hard-liners on the other. Many saw the 15-day sentence as an attempt to appease both sides.

In The Times, columnist Bronwen Maddox said the verdict was "something of a fudge ... designed to give a nod to British reproof but also to appease the street."

Britain's response - applying diplomatic pressure while extolling ties with Sudan and affirming respect for Islam - had produced mixed results, British commentators concluded.

In an editorial, The Daily Telegraph said Miliband "has tiptoed around the case, avoiding a threat to cut aid and asserting that respect for Islam runs deep in Britain. Given that much of the government's financial support goes to the wretched refugees in Darfur and neighboring Chad, Mr. Miliband's caution is understandable."

Now, however, the newspaper said, Britain should recall its ambassador in Khartoum and impose sanctions on the Sudanese regime.

---

Associated Press writers Jill Lawless, David Stringer and Kate Schuman in London contributed to this report.



sirs

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Re: Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton
« Reply #1 on: November 30, 2007, 02:55:21 PM »
Where's the leaders of NOW, on this?  Where's the outrage? 
"The worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal." -- Aristotle

kimba1

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Re: Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton
« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2007, 03:13:24 PM »
NOW would most likely not find this relevent to thier cause.
I always thought how come they didn`t for the sake of equality ask for susan smith`s death .
it`s just don`t seem fair women can`t get the same punishment as men

sirs

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Re: Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton
« Reply #3 on: November 30, 2007, 03:32:21 PM »
NOW would most likely not find this relevent to thier cause.

Why?  To politically incorrect?  No Republican to bash along the way?  A woman, goes to an impoverished country, (her CHOICE BTW, as she wasn't mandated or ordered) to teach children, names a teddy bear after the name OF A CHILD, that the CLASS decided on, and this is not a relevent matter to them??  Does she need to be a Democrat?, or perhaps a member of the Teacher's Union??



"The worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal." -- Aristotle

Richpo64

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Re: Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton
« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2007, 04:24:31 PM »
>>NOW would most likely not find this relevent to thier cause.<<

I'm sure you're correct.

NOW is only interested in the liberal/communist agenda as is evidenced by their support for Bill Clinton who is a serial abuser of women and most probably a rapist.

kimba1

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Re: Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton
« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2007, 06:07:27 PM »
I meant how is this a women`s issue

sirs

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Re: Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton
« Reply #6 on: November 30, 2007, 06:37:45 PM »
I meant how is this a women`s issue

Well, let's see.  Involves a woman, who's a teacher, being singled out in some form of severely unfair punishment, by a government entity.  I have a better question, how is it not a woman's issue?
"The worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal." -- Aristotle

kimba1

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Re: Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton
« Reply #7 on: November 30, 2007, 07:42:51 PM »
I must have some serious sexist blingspot.
It just don`t seem like a womens issue.
the point you brought still don`t seem to involve the fact she`s female.
do I have to go to sensitivity class or something
I`m really not getting it

sirs

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Re: Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton
« Reply #8 on: November 30, 2007, 08:13:27 PM »
Can't help ya then, Kimba
"The worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal." -- Aristotle

Michael Tee

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Re: Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton
« Reply #9 on: December 01, 2007, 12:23:20 AM »
It's NOT a women's issue because the outrage wouldn't have been any different had a male teacher done the same thing.  Women's issues involve sex-based discrimination against women.  Or "gender-based," to use more PC language.

The outrage was over the fact that an infidel (male or female is immaterial) had given the Prophet's name to an animal.  No feminist issue there.

sirs

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Re: Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton
« Reply #10 on: December 01, 2007, 12:36:27 AM »
Can't help you either, Tee.  Then again, that goes without saying
"The worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal." -- Aristotle

BT

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Re: Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton
« Reply #11 on: December 01, 2007, 12:57:31 AM »
I don't think it is a gender based issue either.

But it certainly is good example why cultural awareness and assimilation is important.

When in Rome.....


Michael Tee

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Re: Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton
« Reply #12 on: December 01, 2007, 01:01:50 AM »
<<Can't help you either, Tee.  >>

Uhhh . . . That's OK, sirs.  Really. 

Don't worry about it.

sirs

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Re: Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton
« Reply #13 on: December 01, 2007, 01:42:08 AM »
I'm not.  Never have
"The worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal." -- Aristotle

BT

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Re: Calls in Sudan for Execution of Briton
« Reply #14 on: December 01, 2007, 01:48:55 AM »
Not sure how this instance is much different than salman rushdie or the muhammad cartoon.

The 15 day sentence  is symbolic and the crowds are just out for the entertainment.