Malaysia PM Razak says curb on use of the word ‘Allah’ is key to stability

By Reuters Staff
October 31, 2013

(Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib Razak addresses the World Islamic Economic Forum in London October 29, 2013. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor )

Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib Razak defended a court ruling banning a Christian newspaper from using the word “Allah” to refer to God, saying on Thursday it would help ensure stability.

The court decision this month fanned religious tensions and raised questions over minority rights in the mainly Muslim country.

Christians there have used the word for centuries, but the three Muslim judges ruled The Herald’s usage of it in its Malay edition would “cause confusion in the community”.

“People must understand that there are sensitivities in Malaysia, but what is important is public security and national harmony,” Najib told Reuters Insider in an interview.

He sought to clarify confusion over the scope of the ruling, saying it only covered the newspaper and would not stop people using the word in predominantly Christian areas.

Read the full story by Brenda Goh and Shadi Bushra here.

Follow RTRFaithWorld via Twitter Follow all posts on Twitter @ RTRFaithWorld

rss button Follow all posts via RSS

No comments so far

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/