20 December 2012

Tunisia: Salafist Imams Face Complaints

More than 200 Tunisian lawyers filed a formal complaint against the imam of the Sidi Lakhmi mosque in Sfax, Tunisie Numerique reported on Wednesday (December 19th).

According to the representative of the group of lawyers, the action is not directed at imam Ridha Jaouadi but rather at his December 7th sermon, during which he called on followers to kill and die in a "holy war" against anyone opposed to the Islamist government.

In related news Wednesday, Tunisian activists accused an imam of inciting hatred against Jews during a November sermon aired by private network Hannibal TV.

"We have lodged a complaint with the court of the first instance in Ben Arous against the imam of Rades mosque, Sheikh Ahmed S'hili, for inciting hatred," attorney Kais Baltagi told AFP.

The complaint is based on legislation that allows anyone who uses media to "incite hatred between races, religions and people" to be jailed for up to three years.

Hannibal TV was not included in the complaint, because it aired the imam's remarks live and was unaware in advance of the nature of his comments, Baltagi said.

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