MOSCOW–Over one million believers rallied in Grozny, capital of the Russian republic of Chechen, on Monday to protest against the publication of caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad Peace Be Upon Him, Russia’s Interior Ministry said.
“European journalists and politicians under a false disguise of the freedom of speech and democracy proclaim the freedom of vulgarity and culturelesssness, and insult feelings of hundreds of millions of believers,” head of Russia’s Chechen Republic Ramzan Kadyrov was quoted by TASS news agency as saying.
Russia’s chief Mufti Ravil Gainutdin, who also took part in the rally, said one should not blame Islam for the fact that some terrorists commit crimes under its banners.
“Followers of all religions kill, commit crimes. No one has the right to blame a religion and the entire nation because of that,” he said.
“The event against insulting the feelings of the faithful in central Grozny was attended by more than one million people,” the Ministry said in a statement, adding that police fully maintained public order during the gathering.
On Saturday, over 20,000 people rallied in Magas, capital of the Russian republic of Ingushetia, to protest against the desecration of the Prophet Muhammad Peace Be Upon Him by western publications.
These rallies came in the wake of the recent attack on the French magazine Charlie Hebdo. The magazine published cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad Peace Be Upon Him in its previous editions.