Malaysia: Muslim lesbian activist launches controversial book
A Canadian Muslim has launched a controversial new book on liberal Islam in Malaysia, where the majority of citizens are Muslim, despite attempts by a government minister to ban the event.
The book, titled ‘Allah, Liberty and Love,’ was launched by its author, Irshad Maji, in the capital Kuala Lampur earlier today, after two other venues had pulled out of hosting her, according to her local publisher ZI Publications. Her previous book, ‘The Trouble with Islam Today,’ though critically acclaimed, has already been banned by the authorities in the country.
Ms Manji took to Twitter, and wrote: “Fantastic event in KL! Great energy — except 4 cops who told latecomers that event is banned. Didn’t stop us. Congrats 2 all.”
According to press reports, Jamil Khir Baharom, minister-in-charge of Islamic Affairs, said that the Home Ministry and Islamic officials would not allow the author’s tour in the country, as the book was deemed offensive to Muslims. He also added, says local news agency Bernama, that Manji’s ideology and openness about her sexuality was anti-Islamic.
Ms Manji also had problems in Indonesia, where local police shut down several events after a group, called Islamic Defenders Front, held violent protests condemning her views on Islam, and especially her homosexuality.
The author is set to return to New York on a return flight later today.