Letter: The people who deny Holocaust

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The Independent Online
Sir: I agree with Antony Lerman that "criminalising Holocaust denial would be a mistake" (article, 29 January). He cites a number of past wars of genocide, but overlooks the most recent: Bosnia.

Throughout the four years of Bosnia's war, the Western media persisted in providing space for the lies and distortions of the pro-Serb camp of genocide deniers, which includes MPs and Western government officials. Many like myself, during my stay in Britain, had to put up with such fabrications as "Muslims shelling their own people", "The so-called victims of mass rape are making it all up" and "The Serbs are saving Europe from the threat of Islamic fundamentalism".

For those of us who have been advocating Bosnia's right to defend its very existence, it was tempting to demand the criminalisation and censorship of our opponents. Instead, we sought to confront and expose their wicked myths.

If we start denying people their right to free expression, where do we draw the line? Why not, for example, Salman Rushdie's The Satanic Verses?

DR SALAH EZZ

Faculty of Engineering

Cairo University

Egypt

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