Iraq, Libya Join Countries Condemning BJP Functionaries' Comments On Prophet

The Maldives and Indonesia have also condemned the comments on Prophet Mohammed besides West Asian countries.

Iraq, Libya Join Countries Condemning BJP Functionaries' Comments On Prophet

Iraq and Libya have joined over a dozen countries in condemning comments on Prophet Mohammed from former Bharatiya Janata Parties (BJP) functionaries that have led to a diplomatic crisis for New Delhi as much of West Asia has taken offence at the comments and have issued strong condemnations with calls for public apology from the Government of India.  

The Iraqi statement said that "these abuses, malicious and disgraceful acts will have serious repercussions and, if not contained, may lead to dire consequences that will have unimaginable consequences for the peaceful coexistence, as well as increase strife and tensions between peoples", according to the official Iraqi News Agency (INA).

In response to it, the the Spokesperson of the Embassy of India in Iraq on Monday said the statements do not reflect the position of the Indian government and that strong action has been taken against them.

"In line with our civilisational heritage and strong cultural traditions of unity in diversity, Government of India accords the highest respect of all religions," said the embassy.

The statement, similar to those issued with respect to other countries' criticism, repeated that vested interests are working against the bilateral relationship and are inciting people using these derogatory comments. 

"We should work together against such mischievous elements who aim to undercut the strength of our bilateral ties," said the statement

The Indian embassies in Qatar and Kuwait in their statements had referred to comments as "being made by fringe elements." However, the phrase "fringe elements" is not there in the statement issued by the Indian embassy in Iraq.

Libya's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation in a statement  "strongly condemned" the "insulting remarks" and called for the consolidation of the values of tolerance and coexistence and the rejection of the discourse of violence and hatred.

Egypt-based Arab Parliament also expressed its strong condemnation and rejection of the "irresponsible remarks issued by the spokeswoman of India's ruling (BJP) against Prophet Mohammad".

In a statement, the Arab Parliament affirmed that such remarks fully contradict the principle of tolerance, and interfaith dialogue, and lead to hate, Kuwait's state-run KUNA news agency reported.

On Monday, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia, the Maldives, the UAE, Jordan, Bahrain, Oman, and the Taliban regime in Afghanistan condemned the comments on Prophet Mohammad, stressing the importance of respecting all religious beliefs.

Qatar, Iran, and Kuwait on Sunday summoned India's ambassadors there and the expressed their strong protest and condemnation of the controversial remarks.

The BJP on Sunday suspended its national spokesperson Nupur Sharma and expelled its Delhi media head Naveen Kumar Jindal for their controversial comments that have now pushed the country into a diplomatic crisis, which has also led to widespread public anger in the wider Muslim world, with reports emerging of India's economic boycott at some places. 

Amid national as well as international outgrage, the BJP also issued a statement aimed at assuaging the concerns of minorities and distancing itself from these members, asserting that it respects all religions and strongly denounces the insult of any religious personality.

(With PTI inputs)