Search

 

Cablegate: Bahrain Charges U.S. Teacher with Insulting Prophet

VZCZCXRO7885
RR RUEHDE RUEHDIR
DE RUEHMK #0651 2660422
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 220422Z SEP 08
FM AMEMBASSY MANAMA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 8143
INFO RUEHZM/GULF COOPERATION COUNCIL COLLECTIVE
RHBVAKS/COMUSNAVCENT
RHMFIUU/HQ USCENTCOM MACDILL AFB FL

UNCLAS MANAMA 000651

SIPDIS
SENSITIVE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PHUM PGOV OPRC KIRF KPAO BA

SUBJECT: Bahrain charges U.S. teacher with insulting Prophet
Mohammed

1. (SBU) Summary: This cable provides background on the case of a
teacher at a local U.S. university charged with insulting the
Prophet Mohammed. This case originally surfaced in the
Arabic-language press approximately three months ago and has now
been picked up by the international media. The teacher is no
longer in Bahrain. Bahraini law protects all religions from
defamation. End summary.

2. (SBU) Sometime in June, a teacher at the New York Institute of
Technology's Bahrain campus used a doll as a prop to lead a
discussion on religious tolerance. Some students objected to the
characterization of Mohammed and reported the teacher to the school
authorities. After an intervention by the Ministry of Education,
the teacher apologized. Another student then claimed that the
teacher further insulted her and would not accept the apology. The
teacher departed the island in July and eventually the case made its
way to the Public Prosecution.

3. (SBU) The Public Prosecution completed its investigation in early
September and referred the case to a judge. The judge has scheduled
a hearing for 9 October in the lower criminal court. The judge can
pronounce a sentence in absentia at that time if the Public
Prosecutor has served a summons to the accused. Alternately, the
judge may defer the hearing in order for the accused to be notified
either via publishing the summons in the official gazette or by
having the local police deliver the summons to appear. A close
Embassy contact at the Public Prosecution explained to the consular
officer that according to Bahraini law, it is a crime to blaspheme
or otherwise insult any religion. Ramadan and the current financial
crises have overshadowed this case as there has been no further
reporting since last Friday, except for in the international press.

4. (SBU) Comment: With the accused no longer in Bahrain, a guilty
verdict will have little immediate effect. The teacher would likely
be barred from returning to Bahrain and could be subject to a fine
and/or jail time if she did attempt to re-enter the country
following a guilty verdict. Post has not had any contact with the
accused.


Henzel

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Werewolf: Gordon Campbell On North Korea, Neo-Nazism, And Milo

With a bit of luck the planet won’t be devastated by nuclear war in the next few days. US President Donald Trump will have begun to fixate on some other way to gratify his self-esteem – maybe by invading Venezuela or starting a war with Iran. More>>

Victory Declared: New Stabilisation Funding From NZ As Mosul Is Retaken

New Zealand has congratulated the Iraqi government on the successful liberation of Mosul from ISIS after a long and hard-fought campaign. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Current US Moves Against North Korea

If Martians visited early last week, they’d probably be scratching their heads as to why North Korea was being treated as a potential trigger for global conflict... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Lessons From Corbyn’s Campaign

Leaving partisan politics aside – and ignoring Jeremy Corbyn’s sensational election campaign for a moment – it has to be said that Britain is now really up shit creek... More>>

ALSO:

Another US Court: Fourth Circuit Rules Muslim Ban Discriminatory

ACLU: Step by step, point by point, the court laid out what has been clear from the start: The president promised to ban Muslims from the United States, and his executive orders are an attempt to do just that. More>>

ALSO: