Mosque leaders who praised the 700-strong turnout at yesterday’s protest against an anti-islamic film are now imploring governments across the world to ban it.

And they are calling for all countries to act firmly and decisively against any social media sites that refuse to adhere to any future outlawing of offensive videos and posts which contain blasphemy.

The Innocence of Muslims film made by the American Coptic Church has triggered a wave of unrest among followers of the Islamic faith across the world.

Bradford Council for Mosques, which organised the protest in Centenary Square, will now link up with other faiths across the city and in the UK to lobby for new legislation to protect all religions.

Letters of protest have already been sent to the British Government and on October 6 another peaceful rally will be held outside the Houses of Parliament.

Bradford Council for Mosques chief executive Mohammed Saleem Khan said the way the protest had gone had exceeded organisers’ expectations.

He said: “Young, old and families have come together to show their feelings that all religions should be respected, we are defending all faiths and will work with all faiths to protect all our religions.

“There have been other smaller protests around the country but the biggest has been here in Bradford.”

The protesters who gathered in Centenary Square listened to impassioned speeches by mosque scholars from across the district and from a Sikh leader in Bradford who said: “We are here to show support and solidarity. Any insult against Islam is an insult against religion.”

Another speaker said: “We as Muslims are already taking dirty politics, injustices in Gaza, we are taking atrocities in Iraq but we can’t take the insult of our prophet.”

Other speakers talked about freedom of speech needing to be limited if it means stopping insults and that the purpose of the peaceful protest was to “register our hurtful feelings that our blessed, blessed Prophet has been insulted in a disgraceful manner”.

Green and gold flags carrying the Prophet’s name waved above the crowd outside City Hall while other protesters stood with banners declaring Don’t Insult Our Prophet.

The hour-long protest finally ended with prayers and the message: “Peace be upon us all.”