It's mostly just a publicity stunt.
As soon as we start censoring ideas, information control belongs to those in power. But once people start abusing their ability to free speech, all we have is a bunch of useless and incoherent white noise.
What to do, what to do...
And I'm not sure you can compare dynamics in one country to another, especially with different religions, mixes of nationalities, historical background / sect strife, and so forth.
As another example, the Chinese gov wouldn't ask anyone to not desecrate a Christian symbol because until recently (historically), they just threw Christians in jail to rot.