Chiado Publisher Censors A Book About Islam
PORTUGAL (NOVOpress) — The publisher Chiado Editora decided to suspend the publication of a book that explores the topic of Islam.
The book entitled A Última Madrugada do Islão (“The Last Late Night of Islam — The conspiracy that killed Yasser Arafat and Islam”), by André Ventura, was the cause of threats against the publisher, this according to the primary justification of the very same Chiado Editora in relation the suspension of the edition.…
Now that publisher has revealed in a press release that it has in its possession “some comments and assessments that would force any respectable publisher in the world to reflect, to consider, and to measure the consequences of the publication of this book, in the Portuguese market or in any other market.”
The Chiado Publisher supposedly based its decision on negative comments by university professors such as Pablo Cortés from the University of Leicester and Olufemi Amao, from the University of Brunel [both the names and the universities are foreign — translator], and of “members of the Muslim community who purposely asked their names not to be divulged, fearing reprisals.”
The consulted personalities have considered that the book has “an ‘incendiary potential’ of ‘unpredictable consequences,’ because of the psychological and sexual circumstances that surround the figure of the prophet Mohammed, as well as the mention of real people and places related to the Palestine Liberation Organization.”
The last opinion was that of the “sheik” David Munir, responsible for the Central Mosque of Lisbon. The publisher rejected the idea that this request represented a kind of “prior censorship” and guaranteed that they “absolutely respect freedom of expression”, but underline, however, that freedom of expression “cannot be exercised without taking into account fundamental values like safety and the harmony of the community.”
In a time when freedom of expression is a hot topic, and after the President of the Republic had displayed a preoccupation with the case of Manuela Moura Guedes, it is still worrying that, apparently, a small religious community is able to boycott the publishing of a book, something that would be unthinkable had the theme in line been, for instance, Christianity.
Afonso adds this note: