All the scenes featuring Jesus Christ in the Hollywood remake of "Ben-Hur," produced by Mark Burnett and Roma Downey, were cut out before sending it to the censor board of Malaysia so that the Muslim-majority country's Islamic laws were not violated, the film distributor has said.
Neither Downey nor her co-executive producer husband Burnett was aware that United International Pictures Malaysia, the movie's distributors, made the film 11 minutes shorter due to the deletion of all Jesus scenes, according to Belfast Telegraph.
"We submitted into the censor board a studio pre-edited version which was available for countries that do not allow the depiction of prophets on film whether by law or due to local sensitivities," a UIP spokesman told Malay Mail Online earlier. "We learned from past titles submitted to the Malaysian Film Censorship Board that no prophets are allowed to be depicted on film. In Malaysia, previous films such as Noah and Exodus which depicted prophets were banned by LPF." more >>
A Pakistani Christian family was tied up and beaten by a group of Muslims who stormed their home last month looking to force the family to convert to Islam. But when the family refused to renounce their faith, their youngest daughter was abducted, raped and has yet to return home.
The London-based charity British Pakistani Christian Association has come to the aid of the Masih family, a family of 10 Christians caught in the grips of bonded labor (modern day slavery) near the city of Kasur in Eastern Pakistan.
According to BPCA, the family lived in a small home made of mud and had been constantly pressured by local Muslims to convert to Islam, as they were the only family in the neighborhood who hadn't embraced Islam. more >>
A Muslim man in Pakistan was arrested after he shot and killed his 18-year-old sister because he felt that she had disgraced the family by marrying a Christian man.
Mubeen Rajhu, a 24-year-old who hails from Lahore, killed his 18-year-old sister, Tasleem, by shooting her in the head in August because she disobeyed the family's wishes when she got married to a Christian man.
Christians in Australia will hold a demonstration next week to ask their government to intervene on behalf of Asia Bibi, a Christian mother of five who was sentenced to death in 2010 on accusations of blasphemy, as her final appeal hearing is expected this month.
The rally will be held on Oct. 8 at the Parliament House in Sydney, and present a petition to the Pakistani Consulate.
They want diplomatic engagement between the Australian Government and the Pakistani Government to ensure that Bibi has a fair trial and that her family, the judiciary and the legal team representing her are fully protected from any violence from hardline Muslims in Pakistan, according to the British Pakistani Christian Association. more >>
Controversial Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has compared himself to German Nazi leader Adolf Hitler in his plan to kill 3 million drug users in his country, which has drawn outrage and condemnation from Jewish groups.
Reuters reported that during a speech in Davo City on Friday, Duterte said: "There are 3 million drug addicts (in the Philippines). I'd be happy to slaughter them."
"If Germany had Hitler, the Philippines would have ...," he added, pausing and pointing to himself. more >>
While much in the international news today is dominated by the utter barbarity and heinousness in how the Islamic State tortures and executes its victims, a look back in history shows that it's possible the jihadis have taken pages from the torturous playbook of the authoritarian North Korean government.
On Monday, the Iraqi News reported that IS (also known as ISIS or ISIL) killed six of its own members who fled the battlefield in Iraq by crushing them to death with a bulldozer in the group's largest Iraqi stronghold of Mosul.
This is not the first time that the terrorist group has crushed its victims to death under the weight of heavy machinery. In a video released last October, a Syrian soldier is shown being crushed to death underneath a battle tank. more >>