Dear All,

I am writing to you from Pakistan. I wish to bring to your attention the fact that Muslims across the world are launching protests against the right to free speech and having social networking websites banned in their countries.

The court in Lahore, Pakistan, issued a sentence today, banning Facebook for an indefinite period of time. The URL of the social networking site will be blocked by the telecommunication authorities. This action was taken in response to some 20 people protesting against Facebook outside the court.

This entire hue and cry is a response to a facebook page inviting people to submit drawings of Mohammad on the 20th of May to challenge the sheer intolerance of Muslims when it comes to bringing their religious beliefs under scrutiny.

The implications of this action can be dire for atheists, free thinkers, non-Muslims and relatively more tolerant Muslims residing in these countries. Such ill-conceived attempts at trying to appease and pander to the religious sensitivities of Muslims can be utilized in future to curtail any semblance of democratic rights that we did enjoy in the past. Today it is facebook, tomorrow it could be who knows what.

I call for all atheists and free thinkers to rise up in arms against such despotic attempts to curtail the freedom of expression in countries, such as mine. We could use any and all help that comes our way. Appeal to your media, your governments to pressurize governments like mine into revoking such undemocratic orders.

In solidarity

Younas Chowdhry

Views: 251

Replies to This Discussion

I just found out today about the shutting down of Facebook because of Everybody Draw Mohammed day. (I also saw some Muslims trying to be insulting by having "fuck Jesus" drawings. Fail.) I wish people would realize the only reason Everybody Draw Mohammed day even came about was because these people kicked and screamed and made death threats in the first place.
theyve blocked access to youtube, wikipedia and flickr as well
what else can you expect from our republic Younas. i dont expect them to react with reason! but i do i hope i find myself a nice atheist gal in the country and live happily ever after! but maybe there are no atheist gals in pakistan. ugh
Well i know one, but nothing is stopping you from deconverting someone now is it.
This is sad, Pakistan wasn't like this! What the hell is going on? I used to live in Islamabad when I was in high school, before the world went mad after Sep/11. Anyway, I don't know what I can do from Jordan, I don't know if we are in a much better shape here.
I think you guys should just keep trying to push for public and civil liberties, the freedom of religion is too hot of a topic now, good luck!
Well, I am not going to be resigned to just sitting back and taking this infringement on my freedoms. we're talking to a lawyer and we will challenge this in court. Also, being free thinkers it is incumbent upon us to challenge all forms of quackery and i try to do just that around me.

In solidarity

I don't know if the power cuts at alternate hours at 40 degree celcious is their real problem or the.........
Of course it is the real problems and one of the many problems. But issues like these tend to distort any significance of those problems and that is precisely where we need to expose the sheer bankruptcy of views of those that spread hatred etc and deviate the attention from these issues.


Chief justice, 73 contitution, marriage of two ediots and now these sketches, none of these have any relationship with life of common man like me. I don't know if they get into it by themselves or led into non-issues. But one thing is for sure, those who are so senseless and ignorant about their own problems can't understand a subtal thing like others right of freedom of expression. They are at least 500 ys away from understanding that. So it is needed to help them understand their own problems and to stand for it.
then lets unite on the grounds that are common between us and spread as much awareness as we possibly can.
hey cheer up. i think we just need to fall in love again and life in this wretched country will be much more bearable. i hear ya my bros


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