UAE: Huge penalties to be imposed against communal hatred

The State Public Prosecution through a tweet posted on social media clarified the crime of defamation of religion.

Abu Dhabi: The United Arab Emirates (UAE) legal authorities have warned that penalties will be imposed for the crime of blasphemy if any of its residents were indulging in communal hatred and discrimination.

The State Public Prosecution through a tweet posted on social media clarified the crime of defamation of religion.

The Prosecution pointed out that, according to Article 4 of federal decree-law No. 2 of 2015 on combating discrimination and hatred, whoever commits any of the following acts is considered a perpetrator of the offence of blasphemy:

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  • Offending, showing contempt or irreverence toward the Divine Entity
  •  Offending, insulting, challenging, defaming or disrespecting any religion or any of its rituals or sacred things, or disrupting or preventing licensed religious observances or ceremonies by violence or threat.
  •  Distorting, destroying, desecrating or insulting, in any way, any of the holy books.
  •  Insulting, disrespecting, offending or defaming one of the messengers or their spouses, family or companions.
  •  Destroying, damaging or desecrating the sanctity of places of worship, cemeteries or graves, appurtenances or any of their contents.

The tweet read that UAE guarantees protection to people of all faith groups, and accordingly punishes acts of intolerance or religious hatred. And article 5 set forth that whoever commits any of the acts stipulated in items 1 and 4 of Article 4 of this shall be punished by imprisonment for a period of no less than seven years and a fine of no less than Dhs 500,000 and not more than Dhs 2 million.

The tweets were posted to enhance the legal culture among members of society and to raise the level of public awareness of laws, which contributes to reducing the rate of violations resulting from ignorance of laws.

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