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Friday, February 15, 2008

Rioting in Denmark

[Update] The protests are spreading all across the Muslim world.

17 youths have been arrested so far for setting fire to cars and trash bins overnight in the fourth consecutive night of rioting predominately in the immigrant neighborhoods of the Danish Capital.
Flemming Steen Munch, the Coperhagen spokesperson verifies to USA Today that 17 people have been arrested and admits that the authorities do not know what has caused the violence.

Munch goes on to say "We do not know why exactly. It can be because of boredom, it can be because police in recent weeks have stepped up its search for knives, it can be other things too."

Observers believe that although the rioting and violence started four days ago, the show of solidarity on the part of more than a dozen Danish newspapers, in reprinting the controversial Muhammed cartoons on Wednesday, after the police foiled a murder plot against Kurt Westergaard, 73, the cartoonist that drew Mohammed with a bomb-shaped turban and a burning fuse back in 2005, may have aggravated the situation.

One photographer from Jyllands-Posten received minor injuries when he was attacked by vandals in the Noerrebro district. Jyllands-Posten was the first online publication to first print the12 Muhammed cartoons back in 2005. Police do not know if the attackers knew the photographer worked for the paper or if this was a coincidence.

Some articles seem to suggest that the arrest of the three men, one Dane and two Tunisians in the murder plot against the cartoonist might have sparked this latest violence, with the reprinting of the cartoons simply stoking an already tense situation.

The Dane was released after questioning, but the two Tunisians were remanded in custody for nearly a month Thursday as authorities decide whether to proceed with plans to deport them without a trial.

Critics said the Tunisians were being treated unfairly, and some observers warned resentment over the case could spill over into Copenhagen's immigrant neighborhoods, where youths have been setting fire to cars and trash bins for four consecutive nights. Seventeen people were arrested overnight, police said Thursday.

Here is a google map of reported occurrences in Denmark. (Hat tip to Astute Bloggers)

This is the latest in a pattern of Muhammed related news stories in last couple of weeks that I have reported here at Digital Journal.

On February 11, 2008, we reported of Muslim students killing three, one of which was a police officer, after a Christian student returned to school from a two week suspension for drawing a caricature of Mohammed and posting it on a wall inside of their school.

The week before we reported of an online controversy over a Wikipedia 15th century illustration of Muhammed entry page, which Muslims were demanding be removed to which Wikipedia refused their demands.

Bloggers, including yours truly, also in a show of solidarity with the NewsPapers that reprinted the Muhammed cartoons, also reprinted them on Weds., February 13, 2008, on our respective blogs.

[UPDATE ] Danish Muslim preachers, Imams, are calling for Muslims to "cool down" and to "turn the other cheek", with Mostafa Chendid, an imam at the Islamic Faith Community, saying that Danish media had "confused freedom of expression with the freedom to insult others."

Other media reports from AFP and AP.

Others blogging about this:, snapped shot, Atlas Shrugs, Pajamas Media, UrbanGrounds, Weasel Zippers, Jihad Watch, Gateway Pundit, and Hot Air

Another from snapped shot.