Pakistani ex-Muslims Imran Firasat, a vocal critic of Islam, who recently created a media stir by proposing to make a movie depicting the life of Prophet Muhammad, is facing deportation from Spain, where he holds residency status as a refugee.
His movie The Innocent Prophet, was inspired by the earlier movie trailer on Prophet Muhammad,The Innocence of Muslims, made in U.S., which instigated violent protests from Muslims around the world, causing dozens of deaths, including of the U.S. ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other U.S. diplomats in Libya. And the Spanish authority was worried of facing similar violence from Muslims at home and abroad as a result of Imran Firasat's movie. Therefore, before the scheduled release of Firasat's movie on 14th December 2012, the Spanish Ministry of Interior summoned Mr. Firasat and quickly conducted a close-door trial, forcing him to sign a document promising not to release the movie in any form, whatsoever. He was threatened that if he released the movie, his refugee status would be revoked and he would be deported from Spain to his home country, Pakistan, where he would face certain death penalty for openly leaving Islam and criticizing Islam under Pakistan’s blasphemy Law (295-C).
Under pressure, Firasat withdrew from the movie, but his U.S. collaborator, controversial Pastor Terry Jones, who already had a copy, took Firasat’s name out of the movie and released it from the U.S. on the scheduled date.
Despite Imran Firasat's best effort to distance himself from the movie by completely taking out his name, the Spanish authority decided to revoke his refugee status, serving him with a letter to the effect within days after the movie was released.
Mr. Firasat has been baffled by the manner his refugee was revoked, because it usually takes 6 months to process the cancellation of refugee status.
He has been told by the Interior Ministry that he is a threat to Spain’s national security. He was inciting violence against Spain both at home and against Spanish diplomatic missions and interests abroad.
Imran Firasat told the IBTimes UK that "They [Spanish authorities] are trying to send a message to the Muslim world that Spain will take action against all those who criticise Muhammad. Criticising Islam and exposing Muhammad are not anymore part of freedom of expression. Muslims can kill Christians, burn European flags and insult Christ. But we can’t even speak the truth about Islam."
Imran Firasat, who feels open examination of Islam is necessary for liberty and democracy to survive in the West amidst its burgeoning Muslim populations, says, he wants to criticize Islam, but without instigating violence among Muslims to avoid vandalism, destructions and deaths.
And his movie, despite being on Youtube for over two weeks and watched by tens of thousands of people, there hasn't been any controversy, criticism or violence, whatsoever. Even then, the decision of the Spanish government to serve Imran Firasat with deportation papers clearly shows how much fear have Muslims stricken into the hearts of Western nations. This is nothing but Muslims' perfect enactment of Allah's divine commandment for striking terror into the heart of the unbelievers in the following verses:
- Soon shall We cast terror into the hearts of the Unbelievers, for that they joined companions with Allah… (3:151)
- “…I will instil terror into the hearts of the Unbelievers: smite ye above their necks and smite all their finger-tips off them." This because they contended against Allah and His Messenger... (8:12-13)
- Let not the unbelievers think that they can get the better (of the godly): they will never frustrate (them). Against them make ready your strength to the utmost of your power, including steeds of war, to strike terror into (the hearts of) the enemies, of Allah…. (8:59-60)
Imran Firasat, who has been struggling with financial difficulties, especially after making this movie – which not only ate up all of savings but he also had to take a loan – has one month to defend himself in Court, failing which he may be put on a plane to Pakistan.
Freedom of expression, which the Western world devised as human rights, is the finest achievement that distinguishes the West from the rest. And the Spanish government's decision to deport Imran Firasat clearly shows that freedom of expression is dying fast in the West.