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Southeast Asia
Malaysia sanctions cartoon about the cartoons
2006-02-23
I was going to say that YJCMTSU, but unfortunately the pattern is so clear we all could -- we just don't have to, it's happening in the real world

Malaysia has reprimanded one of its biggest daily newspapers for printing a cartoon lampooning the global controversy over caricatures of the Prophet Mohammad.

The government's move has fanned a hot debate in this mainly Muslim country about where to draw the line between press freedom and respect of religion, because this time it involves a newspaper closely aligned with mainstream Muslim opinion.

The English-language New Straits Times had defended its right this week to publish the cartoon, which featured a street artist offering "caricatures of Muhammad while you wait."

But the government, a prominent voice in the Islamic world, felt it crossed the line and its internal security ministry had given the daily three days to explain itself, the New Straits Times said on its front page on Thursday.

"The ministry said the cartoon had breached the conditions of the newspaper's publishing permit," the paper said.

"It added that the sketch was inappropriate and could invite negative reactions in the country, especially among Muslims."

Malaysia, led by Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, an Islamic scholar, has banned the Danish newspaper cartoons at the heart of the row and has suspended the publishing licences of two newspapers for publishing some of them.

Muslims enraged by the cartoons have rampaged in several countries, killing Christians in Nigeria, destroying Western businesses in Pakistan and torching embassies in the Middle East. More than 50 people have been killed in the protests.

The offending cartoon published by the New Straits Times on Monday was one of the globally syndicated Non Sequitur series by Wiley Miller.
Ah, an American cartoonist
In an editorial on Wednesday, the newspaper responded to complaints about the cartoon, saying the Prophet had not been depicted.

In the editorial, it asked rhetorically whether the complaints were politically motivated to cow the newspaper's editors. "When the truth gets reported, some get hurt. The powerful ones will seek to protect themselves with whatever means at their disposal," the editorial said without elaborating.

The controversy is the latest episode in a public spat between the newspaper and elements of the ruling party, which has objected to the New Straits Times' reporting on sensitive issues of race and religion and its criticism of government policy.


Posted by:lotp

#5  Worse, BA : http://www.alphabetsoup.bloggoing.com/

Posted by: Duh!   2006-02-23 21:42  

#4  Malaysia, led by Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, an Islamic scholar, has banned the Danish newspaper cartoons at the heart of the row and has suspended the publishing licences of two newspapers for publishing some of them.

Heck, not much different from here. What's the count up to now on US dailies that actually printed the cartoons themselves? Three?
Posted by: BA   2006-02-23 14:36  

#3  PlaneDan, Not to worry, it's still peaceful there ; the problem is one of mental attitude and worldview made difficult by the official pro islamo slant in everything official and the accompanying hypocrisy ensuing from that.
Posted by: Duh!   2006-02-23 12:16  

#2  I gotta go to Malaysia tomorrow on business for two weeks. oy.
Posted by: PlanetDan   2006-02-23 11:11  

#1  The NST is merely a sanitized English version of the govt. mouthpiece under the same ownership of the NST group that publishes the (priviledged to be racist) malay dailies.

How ironic that this NST in struggling to reinvent itself (in vain for better sales)gets reprimanded by its master. In fact it should be suspended like the Sarawak Tribune was for the same "sin".

Overall, NST has always been an incorrigible spin paper and pro-establishment mouthpiece. That's why their sales reclined.
Posted by: Duh!   2006-02-23 10:27  

00:01