Danish Muslim group admits newspaper's excuses over prophet caricatures

The Muslim group that spearheaded criticism of a Danish newspaper for publishing caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad said Tuesday it accepted the paper's apology. The publication of the caricatures in the Jyllands-Posten sparked widespread anger in the Muslim world, including boycotts of Danish products. The newspaper published an apology late Monday.

Earlier that day, Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen said his government could not apologize on behalf of a newspaper, but said he personally "never would have depicted Muhammad, Jesus or any other religious character in a way that could offend other people."

A spokesman for Denmark's Islamic Faith Community, Kasem Ahmad, said on Danish radio Tuesday that "we will clearly and articulately thank the prime minister and Jyllands-Posten for what they have done."

At a news conference Tuesday, Fogh Rasmussen called on all sides to refrain from further aggravating the dispute.

"I call on all parties to abstain from any statements that they will create further tensions in Denmark as well in other countries. We must do out utmost to get back to the dialogue," he said in English-language comments.

"I do hope that the apology (by the newspaper) will contribute to comfort those who have been hurt," he said, reports the AP.


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