TO: The Chair of the 2009 UN World Conference Against Racism
AND TO: The Chair of the Human Rights Council
AND TO: Louise Arbour -UN Commissioner for Human Rights
AND TO: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon
We the undersigned hereby declare and state as follows by this Petition:
- 1. Freedom of speech, freedom of beliefs, respect for minorities, and separation of religion from government are the foundations of democracy. Shariah law undermines, seeks to limit, and weakens these foundations.
- 2. “Islamophobia” is defined as the defamation of Islam. Muslim nations seek to include on the agenda of the 2009 UN World Conference against Racism a discussion of “Islamophobia” as a form of racism and intolerance, and seek to find practical solutions to deal with this issue.
- 3. We submit that any discussion of “Islamophobia” and the defamation of Islam must also include a discussion as to the truth regarding statements made about Islam. In most jurisdictions around the world, truth is a defense to defamation. Similarly any discussion regarding defamation of Islam must also include a discussion of whether statements were made in good faith with a reasonable belief that they were true, whether they were opinion rather than a statement of fact, and if they were statements made with an honest belief in their truth as a matter of public interest. Again such enquiry is a defense against defamation in most jurisdictions.
- 4. “Kuffarphobia” is defined as the defamation and loathing of all things non-Islamic and of all non-Muslims. If the 2009 UN World Conference Against Racism includes on the agenda a discussion of “Islamophobia”, then it must also include a discussion of “Kuffarphobia”. The discussion regarding “Kuffarphobia” should also include the items mentioned in point #3 above.
- 5. Advocating or promoting genocide and the public incitement of hatred against any identifiable group by willfully promoting hatred should be outlawed. This not only applies to “Islamophobia” but also applies with respect to “Kuffarphobia”, and therefore both should be explored by the UN. It is our contention that it is “Kuffarphobia” that promotes and willfully incites hatred. Criticisms of Islam do not promote and willfully incite hatred but rather educate and enlighten others regarding the goals and aspirations of Shariah and a worldwide Caliphate which are incompatible with democratic principles.
- 6. Where free speech does not advocate or promote genocide and where free speech does not incite hatred by willfully promoting public incitement against an identifiable group, it should not be suppressed or diminished in any manner. Free speech is the cornerstone of any democracy, and it should be guarded and defended vigorously. However, all speech that incites others to kill or oppress others in the name of God or religion must be unequivocally condemned.
- 7. Kuffarism as disseminated by Islamists is a form of racism. Those who seek to establish a worldwide Caliphate by abolishing all non-Islamic culture and beliefs and imposing Shariah law above all other laws are guilty of racism and should be condemned. It is a contemporary manifestation of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia, and related intolerance to permit the dissemination of an ideology that preaches its dominance over all others. An ideology that is intolerant of differing beliefs, that does not permit freedom of religion, and does not tolerate or accept as equal those individuals wishing to convert to a different religion is a manifestation of racism. Equally an ideology that does not adhere to the principles of dignity and equality inherent in all human beings is a racist ideology and should be condemned by the UN.
- 8. Furthermore an ideology that does not promote and encourage universal respect for the observance of human rights and fundamental freedoms for all without distinction as to race, sex, language or religion is contrary to the very principles embodied in the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination adopted and ratified by the General Assembly of the UN, and should be condemned. Practical solutions to deal with this issue should be explored by the 2009 UN World Conference Against Racism.
- 9. Any statement, condemnation, action or otherwise concerning “Islamophobia” must A Priori include the same statement, condemnation, action or otherwise concerning “Kuffarphobia”. To do otherwise would not only be hypocritical, but would actually promote the very racism that is sought to be eliminated.
- 10. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted and proclaimed by the UN General Assembly states in Article 18: “Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.”
The principles of Shariah, the doctrine of “Kuffarphobia”, and many of the teachings of Islam are contrary to this article, and this racism should be addressed by the 2009 UN World Conference Against Racism.
- 11. The International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination states that any doctrine of superiority based on racial differentiation is scientifically false, morally condemnable, socially unjust and dangerous and without justification. As many of the tenets of Shariah and Islam advocate a doctrine of superiority this should be addressed by the 2009 UN World Conference Against Racism as well. Such beliefs and tenets encourage and foster racism.
- 12. Certain individual rights are enshrined in the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination. Among those rights are the rights to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. Also included are the right to freedom of opinion and expression and the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association. In light of these rights, the 2009 UN World Conference Against Racism should explore and examine the infringement of these rights with respect to the concepts of “Islamophobia” and “Kuffarphobia”. It is our submission that Shariah laws and “Kuffarphobia” contravene these enshrined principles and rights and therefore should be addressed by the Conference. It is also our submission that it is not Islamophobic to illuminate that Islam does not respect these rights and freedoms.
In conclusion, any discussion of “Islamophobia” must include a discussion of “Kuffarphobia”. Each must be analyzed as to whether any defamation exists in either concept. It is submitted that if there is truth and justification for such statements, then they are not defamatory. Exploring “Islamophobia” alone gives one a myopic view, as only half of the picture can be seen. Therefore if the 2009 Conference is to have any meaning, any rational, or any effect, then it must explore all aspects of both “Islamophobia” and “Kuffarphobia”.
Free speech should be a sacred and inalienable right. Any doctrine or ideology that purports to limit, infringe upon or diminish such a right should be condemned. Any ideology that uses intimidation and threats of violence against those exercising their free speech should also be condemned. It is our contention that “Kuffarphobia”, Shariah, and many of the tenets of Islam as an ideology are incompatible with the principle of free speech. As such they contravene the principles of the UN, and the UN should address this fact.
Where there is truth and justification and where there is no incitement to genocide or public incitement of hatred in a willful manner, then free speech should prevail. If one bans criticism of Islam, then one must ban criticism by Islam as well. Furthermore, it is our submission that criticisms and opinions should not be banned. Accordingly, the 2009 Conference should also deal with the issues of intimidation and violence against those who speak out against Islam and Shariah. It is the responsibility of the UN and all governments around the world to ensure that free speech is protected and those that use this right are protected from harm and intimidation. This too is enshrined in the UN Charter, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination.
We the undersigned demand that the UN and all world governments stand for what is right, fair, and just. We demand that both “Islamophobia” and “Kuffarphobia” be examined according to the issues outlined in this petition.