Tuesday, February 19, 2008


Danes clash on web in Prophet row

The controversy in Denmark over the reprinting of one of the 12 cartoons satirising the Prophet Muhammad this week has triggered an unusual dialogue on social networking group Facebook, writes the BBC's religious affairs correspondent Frances Harrison.

Anders says the debate in the media has been very black-and-white

The row began with Tuesday's arrests of three Muslims in Denmark said by the intelligence services to be plotting to kill one of the cartoonists.

All the major Danish newspapers next day rallied round their colleague, reprinting his drawing of the Prophet Muhammad with a bomb in his turban as a sign of solidarity.

But now young Danish student Anders Boetter says he has decided to start a Facebook site called Sorry Muhammad to apologise to Muslims on behalf of ordinary Danes and also give them a voice in the controversy over the row.

What does hurt my feelings is when a Danish newspaper publishes these very mocking cartoons of Muhammad

Anders says that in the last two years since the first printing of the cartoons, the media has built up a debate which is very black-and-white.

"Either you were for the Muhammad drawings or you were against it, but I believe there are many Danes who do not feel that way - they're somewhere in between and I am one of them," he explains.

"I am myself an atheist, but I do respect any kind of religion," he says, adding that the cartoons therefore do not offend him but he understands that it "hurts the feelings of Muslims a lot".


Pertinent Links:

1) Danes clash on web in Prophet row

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