Watch out. The London Telegraph reports:
A leading Islamic cleric called for an “international day of anger” today over publication of caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed, and a Danish activist predicted that deadly violence could break out in Europe “at any minute”.
Anger boiled over in the Gaza Strip, where gunmen from Islamic Jihad occupied the office of the European Union. Europeans began to leave the Palestinian territories after threats from the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades.
Jihad al-Momani, the editor of the Jordanian newspaper al-Shihan, was sacked for trying to publish three of the 12 caricatures. He said that he was aiming “to show his readers “the extent of the Danish offence”.
A leading hard-line Muslim cleric, Sheikh Yussef al-Qaradawi, called for the day of anger to protest against the printing of the cartoons – first published in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten in September – in other European papers.
“Let Friday be an international day of anger for God and his prophet,” said the sheikh, who is the head of the International Association of Muslim Scholars. He is one of the Arab world’s most popular television preachers and made a controversial visit to London in July 2004 as a guest of the mayor, Ken Livingstone.
Just as a visual reminder that this Islamist conflagration is a violent global phenomenon, look and learn:
Where there’s smoke, there’s fire. Do you smell it yet?
More escalation via Reuters:
Palestinian gunmen seized and later released a German on Thursday after militants threatened violence and demanded an apology for caricatures of the Prophet Mohammad that appeared in European newspapers.
The rare kidnapping in the occupied West Bank took Muslim anger to a new level in a controversy over balancing Western freedom of the press with religious sensibilities.
In the Gaza Strip, where tensions are also high, a hand grenade was thrown into the compound of the French Cultural Center. No one was hurt in the night-time incident, security officials said.
Palestinian security officials said gunmen from a militant faction in President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah faction seized Christoph Kasten, 21, from a hotel coffee shop in the city of Nablus and took him to an empty field before releasing him.
There was no immediate word from the kidnappers on their motives, but the security officials said the militants were showing their anger at publication of the cartoons in Denmark, Norway, France, Germany and Spain.
Islamic tradition prohibits realistic depictions of prophets, and considers caricatures of them blasphemous.
“Yes, I am OK,” Kasten, an English teacher, told reporters in the offices of the Preventive Security agency in Nablus. “Two Palestinian gunmen asked me to go with them. I didn’t know where. They did not make any demands. After a while, they put me in a taxi and told me the taxi would take me to the police.”
Earlier, al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, an armed faction in the Fatah movement, threatened in a news conference to kidnap citizens of France, Denmark and Norway if they did not leave Nablus within 72 hours…
And via AP:
Palestinian militants surrounded European Union headquarters in Gaza, and gunmen burst into several hotels and apartments in the West Bank in search of foreigners to take hostage.
The protests spread to Indonesia on Friday, with Islamic hardliners barging into a building housing the Danish Embassy and burning the European country’s flag. The Indonesian government had earlier condemned the drawings, as did Afghanistan.
In Iraq, Islamic leaders urged worshippers to stage demonstrations following weekly prayer services Friday…
… About 70 hardline Muslims threw eggs at the building housing the Danish Embassy in Indonesia, pushed their way past security guards and briefly milled in the lobby. They then tore down the Danish flag from outside the building and set it on fire. The protesters also briefly stopped outside an Indonesian newspaper that ran one of the cartoons on its Web site Thursday to illustrate a story on the uproar.
The outrage Thursday was most tangible in the Palestinian territories, where Norway and Denmark closed diplomatic offices after masked gunmen threatened to kidnap foreigners in Gaza.
Palestinian gunmen in the West Bank searched several hotels, and a German citizen was briefly kidnapped by gunmen from a hotel in the city of Nablus. Palestinian police freed the German, a teacher, after less than an hour.
Foreign reporters either pulled out of Gaza on Thursday or canceled plans to go to the coastal strip…
More on the Indonesian attack here.
God have mercy on those who would ransack, threaten, kidnap, and kill in the name of Allah over a bunch of cartoons. Cartoons.
Read Jeff Goldstein: Identity Politics, Free Speech, and the Future of worldwide Liberalism.
Read RantingProfs: And Then There Are Those Choosing to Fold.
Round-up of blogger reax at The Moderate Voice.blog comments powered by Disqus
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