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Sweden: Hate Speech Just for Imams
by Judith Bergman
Are some individuals receiving preferential treatment under Sweden's "hate speech" laws? It seems that way.
Under the Swedish Penal Code, a person can be held responsible for incitement if a statement or representation made "threatens or disrespects an ethnic group or other such group of persons with regards to race, color, national or ethnic origin, religious belief or sexual orientation".
In 2015, the imam at Halmstad mosque, Abu Muadh, said that homosexuality was a "virus" from which parents were obliged to protect their children.
The Swedish Federation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer Rights (RFSL) filed a legal complaint in October 2015. "[M]any people are listening [to the imam] and there is a risk that the opinions and other expressions of homophobia will spread among believers, as they attach great importance to their representatives' words", said Ulrika Westerlund, chairman of RFSL.
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