Cabinet drops repeal of blasphemy law
Thursday 28 May 2009
The cabinet has abandonned its plans to repeal the blasphemy law and replace it by tightening up anti-discrimination regulations, Nos tv reports, quoting parliamentary sources.
The decision follows a high court ruling earlier this year, in which a man was found not guilty of insulting an entire group of people on the grounds of their religion by hanging up a poster with the text 'stop the tumour that is Islam',
A majority of MPs had wanted the blasphemy law (article 147) to be repealed. Hirsch Ballin agreed to do this and to amend the discrimination legislation (article 137c) to make it a criminal offence to insult groups of people instead.
The Telegraaf reports that Hirsch Ballin now feels it would not be appropriate to cancel the blasphemy law because discrimination legislation is ambiguous and open to different interpretations.