Saudi Arabia´s Twitter Apostasy Crisis Widens (INN) ISRAEL NATIONAL NEWS) By Gavriel Queenann 02/22/12)
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Another Saudi national has waded into controversy after he insulted
the Prophet Mohammad via his Twitter account on Wednesday.
Hamoud Saleh Al Amri is a self-described convert to Christianity who
lives in Mecca and calls himself the "Mecca Pastor."
Al Amri´s tweets sparked a flood of condemnations from social network
users who called for his arrest and trial. Some suggested death
as "the only way" to silence those who "dared to insult God and His
There were also complaints that the tweets were “disturbingly profane
and extremely shocking.”
The offending Tweets were a part of an ongoing debate Al Amri and
Saudi criticsseeking to convince him to "return to Islam," on
February 20 and 21.
In one Tweet, he wrote, "I say about Muhammad... anyone who has read
his biography knows that his words contain a great deal of
"Muhammad permitted vile abuse of non-Muslims and infidels, and
killing even Muslims, insofar as it resulted in victory for Islam,"
he wrote in another.
"I discovered that corruption and nepotism under the yoke of the
Saudi regime is due to Muhammad," he wrote in another Tweet. "Failing
to acknowledge that Muhammad´s teachings are criminal, impious and
intrusive makes it impossible to mend our circumstances."
He also tweeted that he “loved Muslims,” but added “any Muslim who
wrote the same things I have written about Jesus would not be charged
Al Amri has been imprisoned before for "attacks on Islam," according
to the Saudi daily Sabq. His first arrest was in 2004. He also waded
into controversy in Saudi Arabia´s blogsphere in 2009 with similar
Al Amri´s lastest Internet fusillade at Islam and the Saudi regime
comes on the heels of the arrest of former al-Biad columnist Hazma
Kashgari, 23, for a series of "blasphemous" tweets he made in honor
of the Prophet Muhammad´s birthday.
Kashgari recanted his tweets amid calls for his death and fled to
Malaysia, but was arrested by authorities there and returned to Saudi
Arabia, where he remains in custody awaiting a trial for blasphemy by
Riyad´s religious courts.
Described as a "poetic soul with philosophical ideas" who "never
wrote about controversial religious subjects," by his editor,
Kashgari was was fired when his story broke in the world media.
His termination was pursuant to a ban being issued by the Interior
Ministry forbidding his employment as a journalist. Al-Biad issued a
statement saying his views were “deficient” for the paper to continue
Kashgari´s family told reporters he had "repented," but religious
authorities appear determined to make an example of him – and his
supporters – in court. Those tried for blasphemy or apostasy under
Saudi Arabia´s extreme Wahabbist interpretation of Sharia can face
death by beheading in reactionary Saudi Arabia.
The Kashgari case has garnered international attention and
underscored the deep divisions in the ultraconservative Kingdom
between reactionary clerics and those seeking greater freedoms.
In recent years the Saudi monarchy had pushed back against religious
authorities due to popular pressure. However, in the wake of Islamist
parties sweeping the polls following the Arab Spring uprisings, the
Saudi monarchy is trying to shore up support among hardliners who
oppose social change. (IsraelNationalNews © 2012 02/22/12)
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