'Syrian gov't involved in starting Mohammed cartoon riots'

December 27, 2010 18:45


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The Syrian Government was involved in organizing the 2006 riots that broke out across the Arab world after the publication of the controversial cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed, DPA reported Monday, quoting a diplomatic cable released by WikiLeaks.

The cartoons were published in Denmark in 2005 and triggered violent protests including attacks on the Norwegian, Danish, and Swedish embassies in Damascus in 2006, said DPA.

According to the cable published by an Oslo newspaper cited by DPA, the Syrian prime minister had, "several days before the demonstrations, instructed the Grand Mufti Sheikh Hassoun to issue a strongly worded directive to the imams delivering Friday sermons in the mosques of Damascus."

The demonstrations ended when Syria "felt that 'the message had been delivered','" the cable said quoting a Sunni sheikh whose name was not mentioned.

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