Jordan has tabled an emergency resolution at the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) on “respect for religions and religious symbols, respect for freedom of opinion and expression”. The initiative contradicts international standards on freedom of expression, which are clear that restrictions on expression for the protection of religions per se, or to shield the feelings of believers from offence or criticism, are not legitimate.
If the draft resolution is adopted, it would represent a serious set-back to free expression because it would legitimise criminal prohibitions on religious insult or so-called “defamation of religions”. As such also threatens to undermine the crucial and landmark consensus achieved at the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) in Resolution 16/18.
ARTICLE 19 and 38 other organisations from all five continents call on the IPU to unequivocally reject the proposed resoution.
Read our open letter in full here.