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Where are the moderate Muslims?

"Where are the moderate Muslims protesting against Islamic extremism?"

Raif Badawi is a Saudi blogger who set up a website in defence of free speech in his country. For doing so a Saudi court convicted him of blasphemy and sentenced him to 10 years in prison and 1000 lashes. Badawi received the first 50 of those lashes earlier this week while world leaders ignored their own dubious records on free speech and marched in solidarity with Charlie Hebdo. Badawi is one of hundreds of Muslims gaoled, tortured and/or executed every year by Saudi Arabia and around the world while the public, media and politicians turn a blind eye. Saudi Arabia alone executed over a hundred people last year for crimes such as blasphemy, sorcery and witchcraft, international protest was almost non-existent and the Saudi regime continues to be one of the largest recipients of military aid from the West.

So the next time someone asks why “moderate Muslims” aren’t protesting against Islamic extremism ask them if they’ve heard of Raif Badawi. Ask if they’ve heard of the hundreds of other Muslims around the world who speak out only to be imprisoned, tortured and forgotten. Finally ask them if they’d be so quick to express their unfounded opinions if doing so entailed the same risks as it does for people like Raif Badawai.

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