Protests against anti-Islam film, cartoons continue across world | Pakistan Today

Protests against anti-Islam film, cartoons continue across world

Hundreds of thousands of Muslims across the world continued protests against an anti-Islam film and French cartoons on Sunday.
New protests gripped Hong Kong, Turkey, Greece, Saudi Arabia, Iran and Bangladesh. In Hong Kong, protesters, who numbered more than 3,000 according to police and organizers, held up banners to denounce the film and cartoons as they marched through the city chanting “Allahu Akbar” or “God is great”. The group, including women and children, briefly clashed with police as they tried to break through a cordon outside the US consulate to deliver a petition letter, according to an AFP reporter at the scene.
“Freedom of speech should not be used against any religion,” Saeed Uddin of the Incorporated Trustees of the Islamic Community Fund of Hong Kong, a group that claims it represents some 300,000 Muslims in the city, said before the march. “This is not the first time that our Holy Prophet (PBUH) has been insulted and attacked,” he said, branding the cartoons and the film as “malicious, disrespectful and derogatory”.
Saeed, a Pakistani who has lived in the southern Chinese city for 35 years, urged the American and French governments to take action against the filmmaker and cartoonist who were behind the controversial works.
Most schools, shops and offices were closed across Bangladesh on Sunday as opposition parties enforced a nationwide strike to protest against the defamation of Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) in the film. Thousands of police patrolled the capital Dhaka and roads were quiet across the country on what is normally a business day in the Muslim-majority country of 153 million people. About 40 Islamic activists were briefly detained after they tried to barricade a main road and threw bricks at police, local Dhaka police chief Abul Kashem told AFP.
In Chittagong, Bangladesh’s second largest city and only port, protesters torched a bus and damaged a police van, police said, adding that three students had been arrested. Several Islamic parties that are allied with the main opposition party called the strike to protest over the anti-Islam film and the French magazine. The Bangladesh government has condemned the Internet film and blocked video-sharing website YouTube in an effort to calm tensions. In Iran, around 400 people demonstrated in front of the French embassy in Tehran on Sunday to protest inflammatory depictions of Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) in the American-made film and in the French satirical magazine.
The crowd, shouting “Death to America,” “Death to Israel,” “Death to Britain” and “Death to France,” was kept away by police in anti-riot gear, witnesses told AFP. No violence was reported. Witnesses said one officer fired a blank round in warning after a protester threw an egg that hit the outside of the embassy. The demonstration ended after around 90 minutes. The embassy took security precautions ahead of the protest, minimizing staff and closing the French school in Tehran. Iran’s foreign ministry said the Islamic republic “strongly condemns insults against Islamic sanctities” and called the cartoons “an organised plot… by Zionist circles”.
Meanwhile, hundreds of Saudis demonstrated against the anti-Islam film in a village in Eastern province of the kingdom, which bans any protests, witnesses said on Sunday.
Chanting slogans, the protesters marched in Awamiya late on Saturday following a call by Shia cleric Abdulkarim al-Hubail, in line with worldwide demonstrations against the movie.
Demonstrators on Friday in nearby Sihat village of Qatif district burned the Israeli and US flags, also in protest against the film that was produced in the United States. Security forces did not intervene despite a ban on demonstrations.
In Turkey, some 500 protesters in Istanbul burnt US and Israeli flags as they gathered around the Turkish city’s iconic Taksim Square, unfurling banners with slogans such as “Death to America”. Greek police fired tear gas to disperse nearly 1,000 demonstrators in central Athens after some of them — largely immigrants from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh — tried to break through a cordon to march toward the US embassy.
Meanwhile, Israeli police said a Palestinian woman had tried to stab a policeman on an east Jerusalem street on Sunday, apparently in protest against the film. And an Islamist militant group claimed a deadly cross-border attack on Israel from Egypt’s Sinai peninsula in protest at the film, a US-based monitoring agency said, citing a statement posted on Islamist websites.



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4 Comments

  1. kafantaris said:

    It is becoming increasingly clear that Islam has been intertwined with government for so long that Muslims cannot fathom their countries without it.
    Though this may be difficult for the rest of us to understand, we should still recognize it as a distinguishing fact of most Muslim countries.
    But it is their fact not ours. We should not set our clock back centuries to accommodate the Muslim mindset or lack of understanding of basic concepts of individual freedom.
    It is they who should bring their ideas up to speed and in pace with the modern world.
    The Muslim leaders should, therefore, continue to educate their citizens on the ways of other countries; that people elsewhere are free from their government to worship the God they want, and are also free to offend the God that others worship; that this is how it must be if religious freedom is to have any meaning.
    Moreover, Muslim leaders should explain that forcing others to honor Prophet Mohamed can be deemed as forcing them to some extent to adopt the Muslim religion itself. As others cannot impose foreign religious etiquette on Muslims, neither should they impose their reverence of Prophet Mohamed.
    It is imperative that Muslims learn the workings of individual freedoms so that they can harmonious play their rightful role in the 21st Century. Reading the First Amendment might be a good place to start:
    "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

  2. R2D2 said:

    i do not see any point in protesting this video, as that just gives too much importance to that third rate video, and the other reason is:
    I am a Christian and live in the United States. We have Letterman, Stewart and others who make fun of Jesus all the time and I enjoy their jokes, they do not offend me, you know why? Because the Jesus that I know is too BIG and above us so no mortal human being can offend Him. My Jesus is a big boy who can take care of himself , I do not have to take care of his honor, He is the one who takes care of me. If I start to think that I have to take care of him then THAT will be blasphemy for me. I would suggest you to think of your Mohammad like that , otherwise not only you would be deeply hurt but you will be actually degrading him (in my view) by begging Google or US Govt.( that has nothing to do with what a free US citizen does) to remove this particular clip. Hope that helps and you start to ridicule people who think that they have to defend your prophet as if he is BIG he will not be affected by mortals and need you to act on his behalf. If he is the Big Prophet then he would be taking care of you instead of wanting you to protect his honor. Do you really think that your prophet is that petty that he would be offended and will be happy if you start killing people over this? Please stop degrading him like that!
    May Jesus Bless you ALL!

    • Md. Jamal said:

      Indeed Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) is beyond the ridicule of the small minded people. The very idea that he would have wanted innocents killed for small mindedness of one puny individual is an insult to Islam and its message of Peace.

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