Israeli comedian likens Muslims to cockroaches
Muslims outraged by "racist" jokes call for legal action
Outraged Palestinians have called for legal action against a prominent Israeli comedian after a guest on his talk show launched a scathing tirade against Muslims and compared them to cockroaches.
In an attempt at humor, a guest on Israel's "Tonight with Lior Shlein" mocked the way Muslims pray and to the audience's delight likened the way they looked when in prostration to a penis.
The guest continued his jibe to cheers and applause and went on to compare Muslims to cockroaches.
But for some, the jokes were not so funny as Muslim MPs and activists threatened to file a lawsuit against the host of the show for allowing his guest to make the comments broadcast on Israel's Channel 10, the London-based Asharq al-Awsat reported.
"Muslims and Christians alike should boycott Israel's Channel 10 as it deliberately and systematically derides religion and the prophets," said Sheikh Tayseer Tamimi, the chairman and chief judge of the Palestinian Higher Council of Islamic Courts.
"These insults are done on purpose to hurt the feelings of Muslims and Christians," he said in a statement. "This proves that Channel 10 is racist and demonstrates how low they can stoop and how they can go against all religious and ethical values."
Shleim has been under fire before for slurs against religion and in February he outraged Christians when he labeled the Virgin Mary "promiscuous" and joked that Jesus was probably extremely obese so he couldn't have walked on water.
In other Channel 10 controversies, a website affiliated with the channel, called Nana 10, posted a clip of the Israeli version of the reality show Survivor where one of the contestants calls his shoes Muhammad, probably a dig at Islam's prophet.
These insults are done on purpose to hurt the feelings of Muslims and Christians...This proves that Channel 10 is racist and demonstrates how low they can stoop and how they can go against all religious and ethical values
Sheikh Tayseer Tamimi
"Free" to insult religion
Tamimi also slammed anyone who regards slandering religious symbols as freedom of expression and called for an international law that penalizes those who disrespect any religion.
Masud Ganaim, Knesset member for the Islamic Movement, called for an end to making fun of religion under the pretext of entertainment or comedy.
"It looks like Shlein is now addicted to swimming in contaminated media water stained with the worst ethical offences," he said in a statement. "And now he is giving us more of his filth."
Ganaim said he was surprise that no measures had been taken against Shlein despite constant complaints of his mockery.
"In a country that claims it promotes freedom of faith, this blasphemy should have been a disaster. If the same had happened with Judaism, the reaction would've been totally different," Ganaim said.
(Translated from Arabic by Sonia Farid)
It looks like Shlein is now addicted to swimming in contaminated media water stained with the worst ethical offences