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National Secular Society

Challenging Religious Privilege

Tags: Freedom of Expression

Defend Free Speech coalition challenge government failure over extremism orders

Defend Free Speech coalition challenge government failure over extremism orders

Posted: Wed, 13 Jul 2016 13:41

Security minister Karen Bradley MP has faced strong criticism in a letter from the Defend Free Speech coalition, following her appearance before the Joint Committee on Human Rights.

European Commission announces online crackdown on “hate speech”

European Commission announces online crackdown on “hate speech”

Posted: Thu, 02 Jun 2016 15:45

Tech companies including Facebook and Twitter have signed up to a new European Commission plan designed to clampdown on online "hate speech."

UK government must ensure it protects free speech with new counter-extremism plans

UK government must ensure it protects free speech with new counter-extremism plans

Posted: Wed, 18 May 2016 16:02

A broad coalition of campaign groups including the National Secular Society has warned that proposals contained in the Queen's Speech could criminalise a "wide swathe of speech."

NSS: Efforts to better integrate religious minorities must include a reappraisal of faith schools

NSS: Efforts to better integrate religious minorities must include a reappraisal of faith schools

Posted: Tue, 10 May 2016 06:57

The National Secular Society has welcomed comments from Trevor Phillips calling for the "active integration" of religious minorities but warned that this cannot be done without tackling faith schools.

Turkey sentences opposition journalists to prison over Muhammad cartoon

Turkey sentences opposition journalists to prison over Muhammad cartoon

Posted: Fri, 29 Apr 2016 12:22

Two Turkish journalists have been sentenced to two years in prison for republishing a cover of French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo with a cartoon of Muhammad.

Bangladeshi government must act over killings and defend free speech

Bangladeshi government must act over killings and defend free speech

Posted: Wed, 27 Apr 2016 14:07

The National Secular Society has written to the Bangladeshi High Commission criticising their government's inaction over a spate of Islamist killings.

‘Blasphemy’ accusation after academic calls for separation of religion and politics

‘Blasphemy’ accusation after academic calls for separation of religion and politics

Posted: Mon, 18 Apr 2016 14:47

A Kuwaiti philosopher was questioned over blasphemy charges after she said that religion and politics should be separate and that placing the Koran above the constitution was "undoing" democracy.

46% in England support legal limits on free speech where religion is concerned, poll finds

46% in England support legal limits on free speech where religion is concerned, poll finds

Posted: Tue, 15 Mar 2016 16:30

A new report on identity and immigration has found that nearly half of England's population support legal limits on free speech when religion is concerned, and that support for free speech has fallen significantly.

Students launch #Right2Debate campaign, as protest planned against NUS no-platform policies

Students launch #Right2Debate campaign, as protest planned against NUS no-platform policies

Posted: Mon, 29 Feb 2016 12:38

A student-led free speech campaign supported by the counter-extremism think tank Quilliam is urging for reform of campus debate, as the NUS faces calls from secularists and ex-Muslims to revise 'safe space' policies.

Georgian blasphemy law to impose fines for insulting religion

Georgian blasphemy law to impose fines for insulting religion

Posted: Mon, 08 Feb 2016 14:58

Plans in Georgia to pass an anti-blasphemy measure with punitive fines for 'offences' have drawn criticism from a non-Orthodox bishop, and from an MP of the ruling coalition.

Victory for free speech as Pastor James McConnell found not guilty over “grossly offensive” sermon

Victory for free speech as Pastor James McConnell found not guilty over “grossly offensive” sermon

Posted: Tue, 05 Jan 2016 11:23

The National Secular Society has welcomed a court's ruling that Northern Ireland Pastor James McConnell is "not guilty" for a sermon he uploaded online that was critical of Islam.

Verdict delayed in prosecution of "offensive" Northern Ireland preacher

Verdict delayed in prosecution of "offensive" Northern Ireland preacher

Posted: Wed, 16 Dec 2015 16:47

The judge presiding over the trial of Pastor James McConnell – accused of sending a grossly offensive message by uploading a sermon critical of Islam – will not give a verdict until 5 January 2016.

National Secular Society defends cinemas’ freedom not to screen religious adverts

National Secular Society defends cinemas’ freedom not to screen religious adverts

Posted: Mon, 14 Dec 2015 13:38

The NSS has defended cinema chains' freedom to refuse religious or political advertising after the Equality and Human Rights Commission accused them of "failing to uphold Britain's long tradition of freedom of expression."

Muslim Reform Movement embraces secularism and universal human rights

Muslim Reform Movement embraces secularism and universal human rights

Posted: Tue, 08 Dec 2015 11:58

A coalition of Muslim writers, activists and politicians has launched a "Muslim Reform Movement" rejecting violence and calling for a defence of secularism, democracy and liberty.

Muslim students try to disrupt ex-Muslim Maryam Namazie’s talk on blasphemy at Goldsmiths University

Muslim students try to disrupt ex-Muslim Maryam Namazie’s talk on blasphemy at Goldsmiths University

Posted: Thu, 03 Dec 2015 13:43

Protesters from the Goldsmiths University Islamic Society have heckled and aggressively disrupted a talk from ex-Muslim and feminist campaigner Maryam Namazie.

Labour MP Keith Vaz would have “no problem” with reintroduction of UK blasphemy laws

Labour MP Keith Vaz would have “no problem” with reintroduction of UK blasphemy laws

Posted: Mon, 16 Nov 2015 10:06

Labour MP Keith Vaz has expressed his support for the reintroduction of UK blasphemy laws – provided they "apply equally to everybody."

NSS urges cinema to reconsider after protests force cancellation of Mohammed biopic screening

NSS urges cinema to reconsider after protests force cancellation of Mohammed biopic screening

Posted: Mon, 09 Nov 2015 14:12

The NSS has written to a cinema urging it to reconsider its cancellation of the planned screening of a biopic about Mohammed, after a small petition of Muslims from the UK, Saudi Arabia and Nigeria said it was "unacceptable".

Defend Free Speech Campaign launched in Parliament

Defend Free Speech Campaign launched in Parliament

Posted: Fri, 30 Oct 2015 12:04

A new campaign to oppose the Government's controversial plans for Extremism Disruption Orders (EDOs) has been officially launched in Parliament.

Turkish musician Fazıl Say awarded 2015 International Secularism Prize

Turkish musician Fazıl Say awarded 2015 International Secularism Prize

Posted: Thu, 29 Oct 2015 10:44

Turkey's most famous modern pianist has been awarded the International Secularism Prize (Prix de la Laïcité) by the France Committee of Secularism, two years after being convicted of blasphemy for a series of tweets.

Freedom of expression cannot be left to the “mercy of others”, says chair of EHRC

Freedom of expression cannot be left to the “mercy of others”, says chair of EHRC

Posted: Wed, 21 Oct 2015 13:34

Baroness O'Neill, chair of the Equality and Human Rights Commission, has warned that there is no way of securing freedom of expression and a right not to be offended.