Thousands of Sudanese protesters, many armed with clubs and swords and beating drums, burned pictures of a British teacher Friday and demanded her execution for insulting Islam by letting her students name a teddy bear Muhammad.
Sudan's Islamic government, which has long whipped up anti-Western, Muslim hard-line sentiment at home, is balancing between fueling outrage over the case of Gillian Gibbons and containing it.
While Khartoum does not want to seriously damage ties with Britain, the case and the show of anger are useful, observers here said. They underline the government's stance that Sudanese oppose Western interference - at a time when the UN is accusing Sudan of dragging its feet on the deployment of peacekeepers in the war-torn Darfur region.
In response to the rally in central Khartoum, Gibbons was moved from the women's prison across the Nile in Oumdurman to a secret location, her chief lawyer Kamal al-Gizouli told the Associated Press. He said he visited her there to discuss her conviction Thursday on charges of insulting Islam.
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