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Thread: Demonstrators Unsuccessfully Tried To Storm The U.S. Embassy In Indonesia

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    Demonstrators Unsuccessfully Tried To Storm The U.S. Embassy In Indonesia

    Pakistani Capital Sealed Against Protests

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060219/...ophet_drawings

    By MATTHEW PENNINGTON, Associated Press Writer 5 minutes ago

    ISLAMABAD, Pakistan - Pakistani security forces arrested hundreds of Islamic hard-liners, virtually sealed off the capital and used gunfire and tear gas Sunday to quell protests over the Prophet Muhammad cartoons that were banned after a wave of deadly riots.

    Elsewhere in the Muslim world, demonstrators with wooden staves and stones tried unsuccessfully to storm the U.S. Embassy in Indonesia, while tens of thousands rallied in the Turkish city of Istanbul and complained about negative Western perceptions of Islam.

    Troops patrolled the deserted streets of the northern Nigerian town of Maiduguri, where thousands of Muslims attacked Christians and burned churches Saturday, killing at least 15 people during a protest over the cartoons. Most of the victims were beaten to death by rioters.

    The cartoons, first published by a Danish newspaper in September and reprinted by other Western publications, have outraged Muslims. But protests over the past three weeks have grown into a broader anger against the West in general, and Israel and the United States in particular.

    Demonstrations have turned increasingly violent and claimed at least 45 lives worldwide, including 11 in Afghanistan during a three-day span two weeks ago and 10 on Friday in the Libyan coastal city of Benghazi. The Libyan riot outside the Italian consulate apparently was sparked by a right-wing Italian Cabinet minister who wore a T-shirt with a caricature of Muhammad.

    Pakistani authorities ordered a protest ban after riots killed five people in two cities last week.

    On Sunday, thousands of police and paramilitary troops manned armored personnel carriers and sandbag bunkers in and around Islamabad to block a planned rally organized by a coalition of hardline Islamic parties that sympathizes with the former Taliban regime in Afghanistan and is fiercely anti-American.

    As roadblocks went up around the capital, authorities declared they would arrest anyone joining a gathering of more than five people.

    Opposition leader Maulana Fazlur Rahman, who denounced the government ban as unconstitutional, was allowed to stage a small rally with eight other opposition lawmakers and a few supporters. They chanted "God is great!" and "Any friend of America is a traitor."

    But police fired tear gas and guns to chase off hundreds of stone-throwing protesters who tried to join the rally and then enter an enclave where most foreign embassies are. The three-hour clash left the street littered with rocks and spent tear gas shells. An Associated Press reporter saw two injured police, one bleeding from his head, and several injured protesters.

    Interior Minister Aftab Khan Sherpao said police used tear gas, but denied they fired guns. The private Geo TV network said officers fired rubber bullets.

    Sherpao also said 100 to 150 people had been arrested in the capital since late Saturday. Police also raided homes and offices overnight in the nearby city of Rawalpindi and the eastern hub of Lahore, rounding up about 300 people, including some lawmakers.

    Qazi Hussain Ahmad, a top leader of the hardline Islamic coalition, the Mutahida Majlis-e-Amal (United Action Forum), was confined to his Lahore residence and others were detained or told to stay at home, police said.

    "These people could create problems of law and order," said Chaudhry Shafqaat Ahmed, chief investigator of the Lahore police.

    In Karachi, Pakistan's largest city, police said 15,000 coalition supporters, most wearing white shrouds of mourning splashed with red paint to symbolize their willingness to die defending the prophet's honor, rallied peacefully.

    Twelve-year-old Amar Ahmed joined the protest, carrying a sign reading, "O Allah, give me courage to kill the blasphemer."

    Hundreds of Muslims burned a church in the southern city of Sukkur. No worshippers were inside at the time, but one person was hurt afterward when police fired tear gas.

    Local police chief Akbar Arian said the riot was not sparked by the cartoons but by allegations that a local Christian had burned pages of Islam's holy book, the Quran — another sign of the heightened sectarian tensions in this overwhelmingly Muslim nation.

    In Indonesia, about 400 people marched to the heavily fortified U.S. Embassy in central Jakarta behind a banner that read, "We are ready to attack the enemies of the prophet."

    Brandishing wooden staves and lobbing stones, they tried to storm the gates. They also set fire to U.S. flags and a poster of President Bush, and smashed the windows of a guard outpost before dispersing after a few minutes.

    The U.S. Embassy condemned the attack as "thuggery."

    In Istanbul, tens of thousands joined a protest organized by the Islamic Felicity Party, whose leaders shouted over loudspeakers that the crowd symbolized the anger of the world's 1.5 billion Muslims and urged them to "resist oppression." Protesters chanted slogans against Denmark, Israel and the United States.

    Ethem Erkovan, a 47-year-old participant, who held a banner in one hand and his daughter in the other, accused Western nations of maligning Islam. "They are the ones who are trying to depict the expanding Islamic community as terrorists, though all we want is peace," he said.
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG


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    Muslims assault U.S. Embassy in Indonesia
    Several people injured as protesters of cartoons unsuccessfully storm gates

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/11445755/

    Updated: 5:38 p.m. ET Feb. 19, 2006

    JAKARTA, Indonesia - Hundreds of Muslims protesting caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad tried to storm the U.S. Embassy on Sunday, smashing the windows of a guard post but failing to push through the gates. Several people were injured.

    Pakistani security forces, meanwhile, sealed off the capital of Islamabad to block a planned mass demonstration and fired tear gas and gunshots to chase off protesters. In Turkey, tens of thousands gathered in Istanbul chanting slogans against Denmark, Israel and the United States.

    Protests over the cartoons, which first appeared in a Danish newspaper in September and have been republished in other European publications and elsewhere, have swept across the Muslim world, growing into mass outlets for rage against the West in general, and Israel and the United States in particular.

    Saudi papers print apology; Abdullah calls for calm
    Saudi newspapers on Sunday ran full-page apologies by the Danish newspaper that first ran the cartoons.

    But Jyllands-Posten’s Web site said the newspaper wasn’t involved in the ads. It said businesses placed the ad on their own initiative, using an apology issued by the newspaper late last month. It did not identify the companies or say if they were Danish.

    Boycotts of Danish products throughout the Muslim world have taken a heavy toll on Denmark’s exporters, especially those selling Denmark’s famed dairy products.

    The advertisements ran in three of Saudi Arabia’s main newspapers — Al-Jazeera, Al-Riyadh and Al-Youm — as well as the Saudi-owned Asharq Al-Awsat, which is distributed around the Arab world.

    In Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, King Abdullah tried to calm the protests Sunday, condemning what he called “the clash of civilizations” and calling on Muslims to spread the idea of peaceful coexistence.

    “I call ... for the next stage in relations between countries to be a stage of real dialogue where each side respects the other side, respects its sanctities, beliefs and identity,” Abdullah said, speaking at a cultural festival.

    Christians are targets
    Pakistani Muslims protesting in the southern city of Sukkur ransacked and burned a church Sunday after hearing accusations that a Christian man had burned pages of the Quran, Islam’s holy book.

    That incident came a day after Muslims protesting in the Nigerian city of Maiduguri attacked Christians and burned 15 churches in a three-hour rampage that killed at least 15 people. Some 30 other people have died during protests over the cartoons that erupted about three weeks ago.

    In Jakarta, about 400 people marched to the heavily fortified U.S. mission in the center of the city, behind a banner reading “We are ready to attack the enemies of the Prophet.”

    ‘We are fighting America’
    Protesters throwing stones and brandishing wooden staves tried to break through the gates. They set fire to U.S. flags and a poster of President Bush and smashed the windows of a guard outpost before dispersing after a few minutes.

    The U.S. Embassy called the attacks deplorable, describing them as acts of “thuggery.”

    A protest organizer said the West, and particularly the United States, is attacking Islam.

    They want to destroy Islam through the issue of terrorism ... and all those things are engineered by the United States,” said Maksuni, who only uses one name.

    “We are fighting America fiercely this time,” he said. “And we also are fighting Denmark.”

    Protests in Pakistan
    In Pakistan, where protests last week left five people dead, police put up roadblocks around Islamabad to keep people from entering the capital for a planned mass protest called by a coalition of six hard-line Islamic parties, the Mutahida Majlis-e-Amal — United Action Forum.

    Authorities also arrested several lawmakers and Islamic leaders during raids in three cities and announced they would arrest anyone joining a gathering of more than five people to prevent the demonstration.

    Opposition leader Maulana Fazlur Rahman, a senior figure in the Islamic coalition, was eventually given permission to lead a small rally through a square in the city center. The protesters chanted “God is great!” and “Any friend of America is a traitor.”

    But when about 100 other protesters tried to reach the square, officers fired tear gas and at least one gunshot to chase them off. More gunshots were heard later in the city, but it wasn’t clear who fired them. At least two policemen were injured, one bleeding from the head. Several demonstrators also were hurt.

    Stone throwers thwarted
    A crowd of 700 people, some throwing stones at police, tried to march toward Islamabad’s heavily guarded diplomatic enclave about 1.3 miles from the square but with blocked by troops in armored personnel carriers.

    Police also blocked about 1,500 protesters from reaching Islamabad from the city of Peshawar by putting shipping containers and sandbags on a bridge along a highway leading to the capital, said Mohammed Iqbal, a key member of the religious alliance.

    Elsewhere in Pakistan, about 600 people staged a protest in Chaman, a town near the Afghan border, burning Danish flags and an effigy of the Danish prime minister.

    Such protests prompted Denmark on Sunday to temporarily recall its ambassador to Pakistan, Bent Wigotski, because it was impossible for him “to perform his job duties during the present circumstances,” the Danish Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG


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