A list of 84 bloggers has been handed to the Bangladeshi government demanding they are given the death penalty. Their ‘crime’ was to be human rights activists, freethinkers, skeptics, rationalists, philosophers, scientists, secularists and atheists. In an attempt to maintain the political power of Islam they are labelling any freethinkers as blasphemers and giving them the option to ‘repent’ or die.
Ahmed Rajib, 35, has already been murdered by having his head hacked apart by machete in his home for being critical of Islamist groups. Other bloggers have been arrested and Asif Mohiuddin, 29, has been viciously attacked.
Sonja Eggerickx, president of the International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU) commented:
“These are politically motivated arrests, made with the excuse of prosecuting atheists for ‘blasphemy’. It once again demonstrates that ‘blasphemy’ laws are always a bane to freedom of religion and belief, and indeed to expression of political opinion, especially if that opinion goes against those who cloak themselves in the self-righteous anger of fundamentalism.”
The IHEU are calling for people to take action against these attacks on the blogging community and free speech. For more information on what action to take go here.