"We are here to counter the offensive against freedoms," said Thamer Mechi, a mathematics professor. "The [Islamic] government wants to control the media and return the iron hand on the sector to keep people from continuing the revolution that was made for justice, dignity and liberty."
You elect a sharia government, you get ..... sharia.
Yes, yes, we know, its the islamophobes who are the problem (/sarc tag off). How many of thousands of these news stories will it take to successfully break the spell of the liars, deceivers and propagandists hellbent on destroying our very way of life?
I am proud of the liberals in Tunisia, staging a strong protest at the trial of a TV station owner. It will come to a point (sooner than later) that they will not be able to stage such actions. If history has taught us anything, it's that true Islam, pure Islam, "authentic" Islam always crushes secular movements.
The real question is, why is this man on trial in a "moderate" Muslim country?
Heavy security presence at Tunisia TV trial Published April 19, 2012 Associated Press (hat tip David W)
April 19, 2012: A Salafi Muslim kisses a flag reading "Only one god and Mohammed is his Prophet" ; outside the courthouse in Tunis for the trial of the Tunisian TV station for airing the prize-winning animated feature "Persepolis"; and allegedly insulted Islam.
TUNIS, Tunisia – A heavy military presence separating rival demonstrations marked the resumption Thursday of a controversial trial of a TV station owner on charges of "violating sacred values" in Tunisia.
Hardline Islamists, known as Salafists, are calling for the station to be shut down for showing an animated film last October that included a depiction of God, seen by some as sacreligious.
Liberals demonstrated in support of Karoui and his Nessma television station and condemned the trial an attack on freedom of speech in Tunisia.
Barbed wire kept the two demonstrations separate with security forces taking no chances after protesters during the last session in January attacked people leaving the courthouse.
The trial is the latest episode in Tunisia's post revolutionary struggle between secularists and hardline Islamists over the future of the country.
"They are enemies of God and the prophet and they want to politicize the issue to get out of the mess they have put themselves in," said Faisal Rouafi, one of the Islamist demonstrators.
On the other side of the barbed wire, Thamer Mechi, a mathematics professor, accused the government, dominated by a moderate Islamist party that won elections in October, of stifling freedom of speech.
"We are here to counter the offensive against freedoms," he said. "The government wants to control the media and return the iron hand on the sector to keep people from continuing the revolution that was made for justice, dignity and liberty."
In January 2011, Tunisians overthrew a 23-year-old secular dictatorship in a popular uprising that had repercussions across the region. Political Islam, once repressed, has enjoyed a new life, worrying some secularists.
Karoui is being prosecuted for "violating sacred values" and "disturbing public order" following a case brought against him by Islamist lawyers in November.
The French-language movie, which had earlier appeared in Tunisian theaters with little complaint, was broadcast in October ahead of elections and prompted angry demonstrations. Nessma dubbed the movie into Tunisian dialect for broadcast.
Karoui's home was later firebombed by an angry mob.
Iranian director Marjane Satrapi's award-winning adaptation of her graphic novels about growing up during Iran's 1979 Islamic Revolution won the jury prize at the 2007 Cannes Film Festival and contains a scene showing a character representing God. Depictions of God are considered sacrilege in Islam.
Amnesty International called the trial a "glaring disregard for freedom of expression" and said the charges must be dropped, in a statement issued Wednesday.
According to the organization, Karoui faces up to three years prison if convicted.
"At a time when we are looking to the Tunisian government to set an example by enshrining full respect for human rights in the country's new constitution, it is disturbing to see this trial continuing," said Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui of Amnesty in the statement.