Violent Backlash Over Blasphemous French Anti-Islamic Cartoons
The frequent incidents of systematic blasphemy committed against the last Muslim Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) over the years have triggered outrage and violent backlashes in the Muslim world particularly in 220 million populated nuclear armed Pakistan. Hundreds of thousands of people turned out on the streets from Central Asian Muslims States to Bangladesh, Indonesia, Pakistan and other to express their outrage.
Like Elsewhere in the Muslim world, there were mass demonstrations in Pakistan. In federal capital Islamabad, thousands of protesters removed heavy shipping containers on their way to march towards the French embassy. The Police used heavy shelling to prevent thousands of angry protesters to march towards the French embassy in the capital. Protesters reached near red zone after they forcibly removed heavy security barriers one after the other on the road leading towards the diplomatic enclave. At the heart of public anger is frequent incidents of blasphemy committed against the last Muslim Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him. His sacrilegious cartoons were officially displayed on state owned buildings by French government recently.
The official patronage to the blasphemers by the French government has added fuel to the fire in Pakistan like elsewhere in the Muslim world. Many protesters were injured in the violent clashes with the police. French newspapers have repeatedly published blasphemous cartoons under the cover of so-called freedom of expression. However, for Muslims in Pakistan and elsewhere it was politically motivated deliberate attempt to belittle Islam which is fast spreading across Europe against all heavy odds. According to a Pew Survey, Islam would be the biggest religion in Europe by 2050. In many Western countries, Muslims are buying churches which are being converted into mosques. Therefore, the Christianity appears to be in crises which has led European far right political figures like French President Macron to officially sponsor fresh wave of Islamophobia against Muslims. Anti-France sentiments have surged suddenly at an unprecedented level after repeated incidents of blasphemy of Islam. Such protests held across Pakistan. Like elsewhere in the Muslim world, people have started boycotting French products in Pakistan. Prime Minister Imran Khan says that France under President Macron is encouraging Islamophobia which is creating further polarization and marginalization of Muslims in the West. Such Islamophobic polices, Khan believes would inevitably lead towards radicalization in the world.