12 Jun 2006

Oriana Fallaci Trial Begins in Italy

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The trial of Oriana Fallaci for the crime of defaming Islam by statements made in her 2004 book The Force of Reason began today in Bergamo, and was adjourned until June 26.

Adel Smith, head of the Italian Muslim Union, brought a lawsuit contending that Fallaci’s book included 18 blasphemous statements, including a reference to Islam as “a pool that never purifies”.

The lawsuit resulted in the 77 year old author being charged with violating a law that forbids defamatory statements concerning a religion recognized by the Italian state, an offence punishable by a fine of up to ₤6,000 (£4,100/$7560).

Smith previously unsuccessfully sued his hometown of Abruzzo to have crucifixes removed from classrooms in public schools.

Oriana Fallaci, who resides in New York and is suffering from cancer, did not attend.

Associated Press

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