Malaysia Lifts Ban on Catholic Newspaper With Condition

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) - Malaysia's Home Ministry says it
will lift a ban on the Malay edition of a Catholic newspaper if it
agrees to stop using the word "Allah."

But the editor of the paper has rejected that precondition.

The Home Ministry ordered the Herald newspaper last week to stop printing its Malay edition for violating a 2007 ban on the use of
the word "Allah" except to refer to the Muslim god.

The Herald has challenged the "Allah" ban in court, saying the translation has been used for centuries in Malay and that the Arabic word is a common reference to God that predates Islam. It says the ban is unconstitutional. But the government says use of the word by non-Muslims could confuse Muslims.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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