Malaysia Catholic paper turns to court over 'Allah'

A Roman Catholic newspaper asked the court on Friday to overturn a government ruling prohibiting it from using the word "Allah" in its publication.

Malaysia Catholic paper turns to court over 'Allah'
The government in December renewed the publishing permit of the Kuala Lumpur-based "Herald -- the Catholic Weekly" but said that it not use the word Allah in its publication.

This followed a state decree that the term Allah, used byMuslims in Malaysia to refer to God, could no longer be used by non-Muslims.

"We are saying that that decision should be squashed and there should also be a declaration that The Herald is entitled to use the word 'Allah'," Porres Royan, a lawyer for the Herald, said outside the court after a brief mention of the case.

A High Court judge fixed April 29 for the trial. It could take weeks before the court delivers its ruling.

Herald's annual publishing permit expires in October.

Politically dominant ethnic Malay Muslims form about 60 percent of the population of roughly 27 million, while the ethnic Indian and Chinese minorities include Hindus, Buddhists and Christians.

Reuters
Last Mod: 25 Nisan 2008, 22:55
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