Malaysia’s government reprimanded the country’s top Malay-language newspaper over an article alleging a Christian plot to supplant Islam as the official religion.

Opposition and ruling party politicians called Friday for sterner action including suspending Utusan Malaysia or its editor for stoking ethnic and religious tensions.

Allegations by two political bloggers about a conspiracy by church leaders received little attention until Utusan reported it on its front page last Saturday under the headline “Malaysia a Christian nation?”

Christian leaders slammed the accusation as a lie intended to create suspicion between ethnic Malay Muslims and religious minorities. Several Muslim groups have filed police complaints demanding investigation into what they consider a threat to the position of Islam.

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