(AsiaNews / Agencies) - Protests against the blasphemous film about Muhammad have
become increasingly violent and involve almost all Muslim majority countries
from North Africa to Indonesia.
However, with the wrath of the extremists are also resulting in an increase in statements
of condemnation by the moderate Islamic groups. The most serious attack took
place today in Afghanistan,
where a female suicide bomber aboard a car blew herself up along the main road
leading to the airport in Kabul,
killing 12 people, including nine foreign workers in an international shipping
company . The attack was claimed by the Hizb-i-Islami, the Islamic extremist
group, whose aim was to punish the highest possible number of foreigners for
the film blasphemous.
In parallel to the invitation to attacks and demonstrations made
yesterday by Hassan Nasrallah leader of the Lebanese Shiite movement Hezbollah,
now the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) has criticized the excessive
violence of the protests that led to the death of Christopher Stevens, United
States Ambassador in Libya,
killed in Benghazi
on 12 September. While condemning the production of the movie that offends all
of Islam, Rizwan Sheikh, OIC spokesman, said that the tragic killing of Stevens
is a loss not only for America
but for the world of diplomacy. For the first time, Tehran
has pronounced itself against the acts of violence on US diplomacy. Yesterday
General Mohammad Ali Jafari, commander of the Revolutionary Guards, said that
the wrath of Muslims does not justify the death of American diplomats in Libya.
Violent protests have also taken place in Pakistan.
For three days in Hyderabad, in Sindh province, extremists organized protest marches which also targeted
Christian buildings. As was the case in other countries the heat of the
extremists, however, was challenged on several occasions by groups of young
Muslims against violence. Yesterday, a procession tried to force the gate St.
Elizabeth Catholic hospital, but was stopped by a security cordon formed by
young Catholics and Muslims. On 16 September, more than 8 thousand radical
Muslims took to the streets shouting anti-Christian slogans, burning crosses,
trying to attack Christian institutions. The crowd came close to the Catholic
Cathedral of St. Francis Xavier, throwing rocks and breaking windows of the
church, protected by walls. From the upper floors of some nearby houses shots were
fired at the Cathedral door. A nun and her driver were caught up in the turmoil,
blocked by the crowd as they tried to break through the blockade of
demonstrators around the church. The man was wounded by a gunshot. In Lahore, Karachi and Peshawar, hundreds of Muslims tried to storm the U.S. consulate,
clashing with the police. In the tribal region of Dir one person was killed in
an attack on a police station. Today, the Pakistani authorities have blocked
the Youtube site to prevent people from
viewing and sharing the film produced in the United States. The same decision
was made by the authorities of Bangladesh,
theater these days of several demonstrations against the United States.
The ideological clash between Islamic fundamentalists and moderate
Muslims also occurred in the South-east. In Indonesia,
the political leadership and the moderate Muslim movement Nahdlatul Ulama (NU) have accused members of the Islamic Defender Front (FPI), a radical
Islamic group, of manipulating protests, inviting the population to remain calm
and distancing themselves from extremist groups. As of yesterday, more than 400
people of the 'Islamic Defender Front
(FPI) have been stationed in front of the U.S.
embassy in Jakarta,
attacking it with rocks and Molotov cocktails. In parallel, on the island of Java NU launched an inter-religious
group made up of Christians and Muslims to discuss the situation in a peaceful
manner and isolate violent groups. Today, Dino Patti Djalal, Indonesian
ambassador to Washington
will meet the leaders of the U.S. State Department to seek common strategies to
tackle the riots.
In the Philippines
instead the leader of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), the largest
Islamic separatist movement, have invited the population to remain calm. Yesterday,
in Marawi in Muslim majority Mindanao, over 300 people gathered in the center
of the city burning U.S.
flags and chanting anti-American slogans. Thanks to MILF influence so far the
protests have been peaceful.
In Egypt and Tunisia
scene of the first manifestations, authorities are investigating violent groups
that instigated the attacks against US embassies and diplomatic consulates. In Tunisia, the police raided the Fath mosque in Tunis overnight, searching
for Salafi Imam Sei Allah Ibn Hussein, also known as Abu Iyadh, leader of the
extremist group Ansar al-Sharia. He is accused of having led the attacks on the
U.S. Embassy in recent days. The raid ended in a stalemate. Shortly before the
arrival of the police the extremist imam had already disappeared without a
trace. In Egypt, two Muslim lawyers have denounced Abu
Islam Abdulla, close to a Salafi Islamist leader and owner of the television
channels Mariya and al-Omah, of inciting hatred against Christians during the large
anti-US demonstration took place on 14 September in Cairo. According to Mamdouh Ramz,
vice-president of the Reform and Development Party and Tharwat Bakheet, Abu
Islam Abdulla burned bibles in front the U.S. embassy in one of the parades.
The Egyptian judiciary is investigating the case.