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     Home > Religion and Dialogue  >  2014-01-10 15:58:37
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Malaysian official investigating priest over use of ‘Allah’



January 10, 2014 - Malaysia’s inspector general said he would continue investigating a prominent Jesuit under the country's Sedition Act, but he would not question him again. Jesuit Father Lawrence Andrew, editor of the Catholic Herald, is under investigation for telling the news portal Malaysian Insider that the word "Allah" would continue to be used in Malay-language Masses in the state of Selangor, because it is the Arabic word for God. A Malaysian court in October ruled that the Arabic word was exclusive to Muslims, most of whom are ethnic Malays, the largest ethnic group in the country alongside sizeable Christian, Hindu and Buddhist minorities. In November, the sultan of Selangor, who is also the head of Islam in the state, said only Muslims may use the word "Allah." The priest's remarks were published by the news portal Jan. 7; on Jan. 8, the priest was questioned by police after they received dozens of complaints about his remarks. The following day, Malaysian Insider reported that the inspector general was continuing his investigation but would not recall Father Andrew. For years, the Catholic Herald has been involved in litigation over its use of the word "Allah" to refer to God in its Malay-language edition. (Source: CNS)




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