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Indonesia: Muslims Storm Danish Embassy

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    Muslim protesters storm Danish Embassy in Indonesia over Muhammad cartoons Associated Press February 3, 2006
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 6, 2006
      Muslim protesters storm Danish Embassy in Indonesia over Muhammad cartoons
      Associated Press
      February 3, 2006

      JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) - Hardline Muslims barged into a high-rise
      building housing the Danish Embassy on Friday to protest the
      publication of caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad, and then tore down
      and burned the country's white and red flag.

      The rowdy protest by about 70 people was one of the first in the
      world's most populous Muslim country against the 12 cartoons, which
      first appeared in September in a Danish newspaper. They were reprinted
      in several other European newspapers this week in a gesture of press

      "We are not terrorists, we are not anarchists but we are against those
      people who blaspheme Islam," one of the protesters shouted outside the
      building, which also houses several other foreign missions in Jakarta.

      They pelted the building with eggs, pushed their way past security
      guards and milled around in the lobby before leaving of their own
      accord after five minutes. They then tore the embassy's flag down from
      outside the building and lit it on fire on the pavement.

      The demonstrators also stopped outside an Indonesian newspaper which
      briefly ran one of the cartoons on its website Thursday to illustrate
      its story on the uproar generated by them elsewhere in the Muslim world.

      Editors of Rakyat Merdeka met some of the protesters, but it was not
      known what they told them.

      Islamic tradition bars any depiction of the prophet, favourable or
      otherwise, to prevent idolatry. The drawings have prompted boycotts of
      Danish goods, bomb threats and demonstrations against Danish
      facilities in Muslim countries.

      Indonesia's government reiterated earlier criticism of the paper's
      decision to publish.

      "This is about insensitivity and a trend toward Islamaphobia," said
      foreign ministry spokesman Yuri Thamrin. "As a democratic country we
      are very aware of press freedom, but we also believe it should not be
      used to slander, or defame sacred religious symbols."




      Pakistan parliament condemns "blasphemous" cartoons
      Fri Feb 3, 2006

      ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - Pakistan's parliament on Friday denounced the
      publication by European newspapers of cartoons caricaturing the
      Prophet Mohammad which Muslims say insult Islam.

      Parliament's upper house unanimously passed a resolution condemning
      the cartoons, originally published by the Danish daily Jyllands-Posten
      last September, as "blasphemous and derogatory".

      Newspapers in France, Germany, Spain, Switzerland and Hungary
      reprinted the caricatures, saying that press freedom was more
      important than the protests and boycotts they have provoked.

      "This vicious, outrageous and provocative campaign cannot be justified
      in the name of freedom of expression or of the press," the Senate
      resolution said.

      "Freedom also requires responsibility and cannot be extended to
      justify abuse, insult or injury to the religious sentiments of people
      belonging to other faiths.

      The deputies called on the government to lodge protests through
      diplomatic channels and consider economic and political actions to
      "prevent uncivilised behaviour by the Danish daily and other European
      media against the Muslim faith."

      The resolution is not binding on the government.

      Earlier, Khursheed Ahmed, a deputy from an Islamist opposition
      alliance, said Pakistanis should boycott Danish products as a mark of

      About 400 students from Islamic seminaries or madrasas set fire to
      French and Danish flags on Thursday in the central city of Multan to
      protest about the cartoons.

      Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Tansim Aslam said Pakistan had lodged a
      protest with the Danish ambassador soon after publication of the
      cartoons in September.

      Outrage has erupted across the Islamic world since the cartoons appeared.




      Muslim anger as more papers print Mohammad cartoons
      By Kerstin Gehmlich
      Fri Feb 3, 2006

      An Indonesian Muslim militant shouts a slogan in front of a building
      housing the Danish embassy in Jakarta February 3, 2006. REUTERS/Dadang Tri

      PARIS (Reuters) - Angry Muslims attacked a building housing the Danish
      embassy in Indonesia on Friday as more European newspapers reprinted
      cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad that have caused outrage across the
      Islamic world.

      Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen summoned foreign envoys in
      Copenhagen for a meeting to discuss the outcry and the government's
      response to the publication of the drawings, which first appeared in
      Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten.

      Muslims consider any images of Mohammad to be blasphemous and the
      cartoons have touched off an international row and a debate on freedom
      of the media and respect for religion.

      Up to 300 militant Indonesian Muslims went on a rampage in the lobby
      of a building housing the Danish embassy in Jakarta.

      Shouting "Allahu Akbar" (God is Greatest), they smashed lamps with
      bamboo sticks, threw chairs, lobbed rotten eggs and tomatoes and tore
      up a Danish flag. No one was hurt.

      Indonesian Foreign Ministry spokesman Yuri Thamrin said the dispute
      was not just between Jakarta and Copenhagen.

      "It involves the whole Islamic world vis-a-vis Denmark and vis-a-vis
      the trend of Islamophobia," he said.

      Rasmussen, who was meeting ambassadors later on Friday, said the issue
      was a question of free speech and he could not control what appeared
      in the Danish media.

      Danish companies have reported sales falling in the Middle East after
      protests in the Arab world and calls for boycotts.

      Palestinian gunmen seized and later released a German on Thursday, and
      a hand grenade was thrown into the compound of the French Cultural
      Center in the Gaza Strip.


      European newspapers said the publication of the cartoons was an
      expression of freedom of the media.

      "Liberation defends the freedom of expression," French daily
      Liberation said in a headline introducing two of the cartoons, one of
      which depicted an imam telling suicide bombers to stop because Heaven
      had run out of virgins to reward them.

      In Italy, at least two papers published the cartoons on their front
      pages on Friday.

      "Objectively, the cartoons are fairly ugly and are not funny -- but
      the point is not the quality of the drawing or the punchline," said
      Vittorio Feltri, editor of maverick right-wing daily Libero.

      "This is about accepting or refusing the principle that it is possible
      to laugh at, or even just criticize, a mentality, a religion, a way of
      understanding spirituality," he wrote.

      Bulgarian daily Novinar also reprinted the drawings and Spain's El
      Pais reprinted a cartoon that had appeared in France's Le Monde
      newspaper portraying the head of the Prophet Mohammad, formed by lines
      which read "I must not draw Mohammad".

      The Sun tabloid, Britain's biggest-selling daily, reprinted the front
      pages of French daily France Soir and the Danish paper but obscured
      images of Mohammad with red boxes marked CENSORED.

      More protests were expected in the Muslim world over the cartoons, one
      of which shows the Prophet Mohammad wearing a turban resembling a bomb.

      In Iran, worshippers were expected to take part in a nationwide rally
      after Friday prayers to protest.

      (Reporting by Reuters bureaux)




      SA Muslims decry Muhammad cartoons
      Mail & Guardian (Johannesburg)
      03 February 2006


      The Council of Muslim Theologians in South Africa was "deeply
      offended" by caricatures of the prophet Muhammad depicting him as a
      terrorist, which were published in European newspapers.

      "The publication of these cartoons demonstrates contempt for the
      religious beliefs of the Muslim community," the council's secretary
      general, Mufti Zubair Bayat, said in a statement on Friday.

      A Danish newspaper was the first to publish the 12 cartoons in
      September. One of them depicts the prophet wearing a bomb-shaped turban.

      Several other European newspapers published the drawings this week in
      a show of press freedom. On Wednesday, the Egyptian owner of the
      France Soir daily fired the editor after the paper republished all the

      Two right-wing Italian newspapers on Friday published the 12 caricatures.

      Muslims have responded by boycotting Danish products in supermarkets.
      Palestinian gunmen on Thursday surrounded the European Union's offices
      in the Gaza Strip, demanding an apology.

      "What was the intention of these publications ... when it is a
      well-known fact that he was a paragon of peace, mercy, tolerance and
      forgiveness?" Bayat said.

      The publications have abused freedom of speech by taking it to a
      dangerous, irresponsible and unacceptable level.

      "The Muslim community views the publications of such offensive
      material as a serious attack on the integrity of their religion, and
      as an attack on the global Muslim community."

      The council called on Muslims to respect law and order in their
      protests against the cartoons. -- Sapa



      We must show our opposition to Islam, says Danish queen
      By Hannah Cleaver in Berlin
      (Filed: 15/04/2005)

      Queen Margrethe II of Denmark has called on the country "to show our
      opposition to Islam", regardless of the opprobium such a stance
      provokes abroad.

      Her comments further undermined the image of Denmark as a liberal
      haven for those seeking a new life in northern Europe.

      Queen Margrethe II
      The Danish government has already been accused of fuelling xenophobia
      by introducing measures which effectively closed the country to asylum

      But in overtly political passages from an official biography published
      yesterday Queen Margrethe makes comments certain to complicate her
      nation's relationship with Muslims.

      She said: "We are being challenged by Islam these years - globally as
      well as locally. It is a challenge we have to take seriously. We have
      let this issue float about for too long because we are tolerant and lazy.

      "We have to show our opposition to Islam and we have to, at times, run
      the risk of having unflattering labels placed on us because there are
      some things for which we should display no tolerance."

      "And when we are tolerant, we must know whether it is because of
      convenience or conviction."
      The Queen, who turns 65 tomorrow and has reigned since 1972, wields no
      political power but does occasionally comment on political issues.

      Denmark has seriously limited immigration in the past three years and
      the anti-immigrant Danish People's Party, an ally of the centre-Right
      government, has pushed through laws making it harder to bring in
      foreign spouses or qualify for asylum.

      The queen told her biographer, Annelise Bistrup, apparently referring
      to Muslim fundamentalists: "There is something impressive about people
      for whom religion imbues their existence, from dusk to dawn, from
      cradle to grave."

      She said she understood how disaffected young Muslims might find
      refuge in religion. This tendency should be fought by encouraging
      Muslims to learn Danish so they could integrate better, she said.

      "We should not be content with living next to each other. We should
      rather live together."



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