The 61st Universal Human Rights Anniversary under the Swiss “abolishment” of Minarets building in Mosques
|Thursday, December 3,2009 10:38|
|By Hend Harouni|
The 61st Universal Human Rights Anniversary coincides with the Swiss referendum for the abolishment of Minarets and building of Mosques. There is immense resentment among Muslims, and non Muslims, Human Rights defenders and the public opinion.
Switzerland is renowned as the human rights country where the human rights conventions and texts were born. Basically the Geneva Convention called for the freedom of religious right and this referendum is a conflict in itself.
After 61 years of calling for defense and the practice of human rights values all over the world, Switzerland has issued the decision for a pejorative and non coexisting oriented practice against a particular community namely the Muslims where it concretely amended the constitution with 57,5% “approval” votes taken on 29 November, 2009 for banning minarets. A launched campaign for a forced referendum based on collecting 100,000 signatures from voters started on May 1st, 2007 insisted on by a group of right-wing politicians mainly from the Swiss People's Party and the Federal Democratic Union, the former presently being the largest party in the Swiss parliament .
Switzerland has a population of 8 million, of which around 400,000 people practice Islam. Islam is the second most popular religion there. According to studies there are only 4 minarets in the country.
The banning of minarets shows that these introducers of the referendum plans to promote more than just the banning of minarets
How can a distinguished country like Switzerland which is known as a country of ”peace and stability" based on its non involvement in other country’s disappointingly initiates the calling for such delicate restriction on the level of Muslims religious freedom : attacking religious freedom practice.
A mosque has always been built with a minaret so why is it that they call for its banning. Whether in Switzerland or in any other place in the world, it is the legitimate right to choose one's religion promoting religious freedom right.
Blame is strongly made to Swiss citizens who voted for such “mantrap” where they are called to review their position and by having accepted to “insult” Muslims this easily gives further negative opportunities to extremists to destroy the distinguished image that Switzerland was benefiting from towards Muslims all over the world. Moreover the liberated minds in this world who truly consider that religious freedom is a red line are obviously shocked by the banning of the minarets.
One of the unjust “day and night running” against Muslims and Islam in the world is the Dutch extremist right wing anti-Islamist Dutch parliamentarian Geert Wilders who works for the division among people and wherever Muslims exist. Wilders utilizes his tools as a “law” while war waged against religion is itself an infringement of the law and all the nations too as causing inhuman treatments, reinforcing hatred and conflicts.
Why now specifically on the 61st anniversary of the Human Rights declaration instead of promoting and encouraging integration of Muslims in Switzerland and in other countries, is their dangerous conflict encouraging stronger gaps between non-Muslims and Muslims.
Several human rights organization and associations claimed that the Swiss referendum violated freedom of religion as a discrimination on racial and religious affiliation.
In such context, we refer to the basic content of The Universal Declaration of Human Rights:
Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world,
Whereas disregard and contempt for human rights have resulted in barbarous acts which have outraged the conscience of mankind, and the advent of a world in which human beings shall enjoy freedom of speech and belief and freedom from fear and want has been proclaimed as the highest aspiration of the common people,
Whereas it is essential, if man is not to be compelled to have recourse, as a last resort, to rebellion against tyranny and oppression, that human rights should be protected by the rule of law,
Whereas it is essential to promote the development of friendly relations between nations,
Whereas the peoples of the United Nations have in the Charter reaffirmed their faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person and in the equal rights of men and women and have determined to promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom,
Whereas Member States have pledged themselves to achieve, in co-operation with the United Nations, the promotion of universal respect for and observance of human rights and fundamental freedoms,
Whereas a common understanding of these rights and freedoms is of the greatest importance for the full realization of this pledge,
Now, Therefore THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY proclaims THIS UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS as a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations, to the end that every individual and every organ of society, keeping this Declaration constantly in mind, shall strive by teaching and education to promote respect for these rights and freedoms and by progressive measures, national and international, to secure their universal and effective recognition and observance, both among the peoples of Member States themselves and among the peoples of territories under their jurisdiction.