Iranian media reported last month that the Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC) had urged Muslims to boycott the controversial film “Lady of Heaven,” which depicts the life of the Prophet’s daughter Fatimah. According to a report by Iqna:
June 6, 2022 The Islamic Human Rights Commission has urged Muslims to boycott the controversial film “Lady of Heaven” which tries to sow discord among Muslims. In a statement on Sunday, the IHRC slammed the screening of the movie, urging the Muslim community to unite to confront such malicious measures. “With its derogatory portrayal of eminent Muslim personages in early Islamic history including the Prophet Muhammad’s wives, the film represents a blatant provocation and brazen attempt to sow discord and division in the House of Islam,” reads the statement.
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The controversy centers on “The Lady of Heaven,” a new film by Shia Muslim cleric Sheikh Yasser al-Habib, described as the first film depicting the life and death of the Prophet Mohammed’s daughter Fatima. Strict religious bans on the depiction of the Prophet have led to protests outside cinemas in several British cities which called the film “blasphemous” and “racist.” More than 133,000 people had signed a petition against the movie, leading to some British cinemas pulling screenings from their schedules. Most Sunni Muslims believe depictions of Islamic prophets should be prohibited, whereas Shia Islam typically accepts such depictions if they are done respectfully. The Global Influence Operations Report recently reported that the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB), Britain’s most influential Muslim organization with historical ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, also criticized the movie’s release. In June, prominent Leeds imam Qari Asim was dismissed from his post as a governmental adviser on Anti-Muslim Hatred after backing calls to ban the film.
The Islamic Human Rights Commission (IHRC) is a UK-based NGO founded in 1997 and has had Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations since 2007. The IHRC website says it works with different organizations from Muslim and non-Muslim backgrounds “to campaign for justice for all peoples regardless of their racial, confessional, or political background.” The IHRC is considered supportive of the Iranian regime and has been central to organizing the events of the annual International Quds Day, initiated by the Iranian revolutionary regime for many years.