Dr. Ibrahim Abu Mohamed, the Grand Mufti and head Sunni Muslim religious authority in Australia, sued for libel after being depicted by the Australian Daily Telegraph in a Photoshop illustration as a monkey in the “Hear No Evil, See No Evil, Speak No Evil” series.
Although the illustration was published in November 2015, right after the Paris terror attacks at the Bataclan and at other spots in the city, the Grand Mufti and the Telegraph resolved the lawsuit this week with a “confidential settlement” in his favor, the Guardian reported.
The Grand Mufti filed his libel lawsuit last year, claiming it was defamatory and suggested he “turns a blind eye to terrorism.”
“The grand mufti … holds the highest religious post for an Islamic scholar in Australia. He has dedicated his life to the pursuit of knowledge, justice, and peace, and is proud to continue to represent the religious views of the vast majority of Australian Muslims,” the Australian National Imams Council said in a statement, according to the Guardian.
iMediaEthics contacted both Ibrahim’s lawyer and the Telegraph‘s publisher News Corp Australia to ask if the newspaper will make a cash payment and/or apology as part of the settlement. Ibrahim’s lawyer, Moustafa Kheir, told iMediaEthics by e-mail, “We are pleased the matter has settled and that a verdict has been entered in favour of the mufti.”
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The Telegraph‘s reporting slammed Ibrahim, accusing him of ignoring the Paris terror attack and not condemning it.
The front-page headline in all caps read “The Unwise Mufti” and along with the pictures of Ibrahim, the Telegraph used the words “sees no problem, hears no concerns, speaks no English.” [Ibrahim is Egyptian and doesn’t speak English].
The Telegraph also published a story with the headline “Even Hamas condemns the Paris attacks so why won’t Australia’s Grand Mufti Ibrahim Abu Mohamed?”