Drawing caricatures ridiculing Muhammad – as well as Moses and Jesus – should be
illegal, MK Ibrahim Sarsour said Tuesday.
The UAL-Ta’al MK submitted
legislation on Monday that would outlaw cursing, defaming and publishing
pictures or caricatures of holy books and prophets, including Muhammad, Moses
It includes, according to Sarsour, “any offense in any form –
speaking, drawing – that harms people’s religious sentiments, whether directly
Sarsour explained that, although there have not been any
offensive caricatures of Muhammad disseminated in Israel recently, he would like
to prevent it from occurring in the future. He also pointed out that soccer fans
often chant things about Muhammad that are offensive to Muslims.
is no difference between religion and a prophet, and a law like this is
necessary regardless of whether the phenomenon exists, because it can exist,” he
The current law, which outlaws “grossly offending” religions is not
strong enough, Sarsour added, and the time has come for the punishment to be
greater, in the form of high fines and jail sentences, so it deters people from
Sarsour saw no issue of free speech with the
legislation, saying he makes “a clear difference between the right to express
opinions and harming religious sentiment. That is a red line, and there is no
justification to cross it.”
The bill is unlikely to pass, as it does not
have support from any MKs outside of UAL-Ta’al or in the coalition.