Thursday, November 19, 2009

Bahrain's Ambassador Mistaken on Academic Freedom

Clarification: The Bahraini ambassador said that she had not heard of the incident and that she would look into it if Vishnu would provide a link for her to look into.

I'll have the full Bahrani Ambassador's quotation on Israel later this evening or earlier tomorrow.

But before then, I'd like to defend my friend, Vishnu, who asked a question related to how Bahrain can best safeguard academic freedom. The Ambassador said that the situation that Vishnu described sounded more like Sudan than Bahrain and that he had gotten it wrong.

Well, it turns out that Vishnu didn't have it wrong at all and I wonder what it means that the Ambassador from Bahrain didn't know anything about this lack of academic freedom . Here's the article in full.
Bahrain charges US lecturer with insulting Prophet Muhammad

Lecturer also said to have insulted student wearing head scarf, saying it was 'barrier to knowledge'
Associated Press

A spokesman for Bahrain's general prosecutor says an American teacher has been charged with insulting the Prophet Muhammad for displaying pictures of Islam's founder to university students.

Nawaf al-Maawdah says the pictures showed the prophet in ragged clothing. He says the lecturer also insulted a student for wearing a head scarf, which she described as "a barrier to knowledge." He declined to reveal the name of the teacher or the university.

Bahrain's Gulf Daily News reported that the teacher involved in the affair works at a private university. According to the report, the lecturer was supposed to apologize to the students for her conduct, but instead proceeded to insult the girl who informed the school's management of the teacher's conduct.

Meanwhile, a US embassy spokeswoman said she could not release any information about the case or confirm that an American is involved.

Al-Maawdah said Friday that the case has been referred to court but no trial date has been set. A Bahraini newspaper reported that the teacher left the country.

The latest affair is reminiscent of a 2007 case where a British teacher in Sudan was sentenced to a prison term after she allowed her students to name a teddy bear "Muhammad." However, subsequent international anger and pressure prompted Sudan to release the teacher.

1 comment:

bath mateus said...

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