Consulate set afire over cartoon

Discussion in 'Serious Chat' started by Anthony., Feb 5, 2006.

  1. #1

    Anthony. .Orestes LPA Super VIP

    Aug 25, 2003
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    (CNN) -- Islamic anger over newspaper cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohammed continues to spread internationally, with thousands of protesters rallying while some of their number torched the Danish consulate in Beirut.
    Wielding sticks and stones, the demonstrators ransacked the building on Sunday, smashing its windows.

    Initially, the army did not appear to be in control, but later deployed hundreds of troops in army personnel carriers to restore order. Police also fired tear gas to break up the protesters outside the embassy.
    Sunday's demonstrations came a day after Muslims in the Syrian capital Damascus torched the Norwegian and Danish embassies.
    No staff were hurt, but governments of both countries advised their citizens to leave Syria. After the demonstrations broke out in Beirut Sunday, the Danish Foreign Ministry also recommended that Danes leave Lebanon.

    Newspapers in Denmark, Norway and several other countries have published images of Islam's Prophet Mohammed, which is banned by Islamic law.

    Thousands of angry Muslims also protested in other cities around the world, including Islamabad, Pakistan; Baghdad, Iraq; Khartoum, Sudan; Jakarta, Indonesia; and the Palestinian territories.

    Lebanese politicians appealed for order following Sunday's protests.
    "We do not accept any act that effects the security of others," said Prime Minister Fouad Siniora. "These groups include people who intended to destroy properties on purpose, giving a bad example of Islam.
    "Islam has nothing to do with any of this, no matter how others disrespected the prophets, about whom God says, we have protected you from those who ridicule."

    In Afghanistan, the protesters, who chanted anti-Danish slogans and burned a Danish flag in the town of Mihtarlam, about 100 kilometers (60 miles) east of Kabul., were peaceful. They were demanding prosecution of editors of the Danish newspaper that originally published the cartoons.
    Syrian officials denounced Saturday's violence in a television address, and called on protesters to exercise self-restraint, Nidal Kabalan, a Syrian TV executive, told CNN.

    But the culture editor of the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten, which originally published the cartoons five months ago, said there was more to the backlash than simple anger over the drawings. "I think it's very unfortunate that now Danish interests, Danish buildings are being attacked in Syria, but let me also say that Syria is a police state, and this could not have happened if not the authorities in some way had allowed it to happen," said Flemming Rose, the editor.

    A senior Western diplomatic source told CNN the protests must have been permitted by the Syrian government, which apparently felt compelled to allow people to let off steam. However, the source said, things got out of hand. In contrast, weekend demonstrations in London were peaceful. They occurred for a second consecutive day Saturday outside the Danish embassy, with protesters staying behind security barriers as speakers and placards condemned the cartoons.
    "Britain was very responsible," said Asghar Bukari, a member of the Muslim Public Affairs Committee."The papers were very responsible, and you can feel it. It's good will among the general Muslim public. They don't feel this us-versus-them tension that's perhaps going around the world and in Europe."

    In Pakistan, hundreds of students and teachers took to the streets of Lahore, calling for those responsible for the publication of the cartoons to be executed. On Friday, Pakistan's government unanimously passed a resolution condemning the cartoons.

    A newspaper editor in Jordan who was fired after publishing the cartoons in the weekly tabloid Shihan urged Muslims to be reasonable.
    "Who offends Islam more?" asked Jihad Momeni. "A foreigner who endeavors to draw the prophet ... or a Muslim with an explosive belt who commits suicide in a wedding party in Amman or elsewhere?"
    Iran said Sunday it had recalled its ambassador to Denmark over the publication of the cartoons.

    "Iran has summoned its ambassador in Denmark to Tehran," Foreign Ministry spokesman Hamid Reza Asefi told a news conference, according to Reuters. "Freedoms should be accompanied by responsibility."

    Free speech argument

    The controversy began last September, when 12 drawings of the Muslim prophet were published in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten. It gained strength in January, when a Norwegian newspaper reprinted the drawings.

    Jyllands-Posten had published an article about the illustrator of a Danish book on the life of Mohammed, who had demanded to remain anonymous because the book cover depicted the prophet, a sacrilege in Islam.
    Some of the images in question were considered to be particularly demeaning, including an image of the Prophet Mohammed wearing a turban shaped like a bomb with a lit fuse. Following the Norwegian article, other newspapers picked up the story and followed suit by publishing the drawings, including France's Le Monde and Italy's La Stampa.
    The week before last, two European newspapers -- Die Welt in Berlin, and France Soir in Paris -- and two small weekly Jordanian newspapers -- Shihan and Al-Mehwar -- reprinted the cartoons and characterized the publications as a matter of free speech.

    According to Jordan's Petra News Agency, arrest warrants were issued Saturday for the editors-in-chief of the Jordanian newspapers.
    Shihan's editor, Jihad Momeni, who is a former member of the Jordanian Senate, was fired after publishing the cartoons. Petra reported that Jordan's leader, King Abdullah II, said the publication of such images is a "crime that that can not be justified under freedom of expression."
    Demonstrations against the caricatures also occurred in Baghdad; Khartoum, Sudan, and the Palestinian territories.

    Pakistan's Foreign Ministry said Saturday it has summoned Denmark's ambassador to the ministry "to lodge a strong protest and demand immediate action by the Danish government against the newspaper."
    In a strongly worded statement, a U.S. State Department spokesman said Friday that, despite respect for the freedom of expression, the publication of cartoons that incite religious or ethnic hatreds is unacceptable.

    Whatever the reasons behind such acts of violence and destruction, I am loosing respect for this people each day since this controversy started. You can not call for the execution of a foreigner or torch the embassies of his native country because you don't agree with A CARTOON that was published in a newspaper. They are now even threatening other countries of the EU over this... What if, after each terrorist attack commited by a limited number of Muslims, we'd attack buildings of Muslim interests all over the world? Well now they're not doing that over a war nor a terrorist attack, they're doing this over a CARTOON.

    That is just ridiculous.
  2. #2

    Dean LPA Addict LPA Addict

    May 8, 2004
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    Did they even think that doing stuff like that is pretty much the reason someone decided to make that cartoon? I can understand why it's caused uproar but it seems to have descended into petty bullshit pretty quickly.

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