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Published On: Sat, Sep 22nd, 2012

Prof. Harry Roque defies U.P. administration, shows anti-Islam film

Just one day after an order from the University of the Philippines, Diliman Chancellor Dr. Caesar A. Saloma to ban the showing of a controversial anti-Islam film and the cancellation of the forum by College of Law Dean Danilo Conception, the showing of the film went on Friday evening, according to an ABS-CBN news report Saturday.

Prominent human rights lawyer and lecturer, Harry Roque defied the Chancellor’s ban Friday and showed the 14-minute anti-Islam film “Innocence of Muslims” to his Constitutional Law 2 class at UP Diliman.

In a blog posting Friday, Roque stated, “the Chancellor‘s order is in direct contravention of my academic freedom and freedom of expression.

I am showing it in my class on Constitutional Law 2 where we are still discussing freedom of expression, freedom of religion and ironically, we are supposed to start discussing academic freedom today.”

Signs were also posted at the college, saying “No film showing”, but Roque’s class of about 20 students and a handful of observers, including fellow law school professors, still showed up.

After the screening of the controversial film, Roque called the film “trash”, saying he didn’t endorse the clip, but stressed it was important to have the opportunity to watch the movie.

The film ridicules the Prophet Muhammad and has triggered Muslim protests in many countries, including last week near a university in predominantly Muslim Marawi city in the southern Philippines.

Prior to the showing of “Innocence of Muslims”, Roque stated in his blog, “My license to show the trailer is granted by the Constitution and Human Rights Law. It falls under both academic freedom and freedom of expression.

No order from the Chancellor or from anyone else can infringe on these rights.

I warn those who will try to prevent me from discharging my functions as an academic and as a lawyer that I will hold them civilly and criminally liable.”

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About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today and hosts the podcast, Outbreak News Interviews on iTunes, Stitcher and Spotify Robert is politically Independent and a born again Christian Follow @bactiman63

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