Anti-cartoon protester killed in Kenya

200 demonstrators try to storm Danish envoy's home; hurl stones at foreign cars.

kenya riot 298.88 (photo credit: Associated Press)
kenya riot 298.88
(photo credit: Associated Press)
Police shot and wounded one person Friday as they sought to keep hundreds of demonstrators from marching to the residence of Denmark's ambassador to protest cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad first published in a Danish newspaper. Police and organizers had said marchers would not be allowed near any embassy. At least 200 demonstrators tried to go the home of the Danish envoy, triggering clashes with anti-riot police near a major highway. The demonstrators shouted anti-Denmark slogans as they threw stones at vehicles carrying foreigners in Westlands, an upscale neighborhood in Kenya's capital of Nairobi. The violence subsided after the protesters fled into a nearby mosque. A vehicle that had taken the injured demonstrator to hospital rolled and killed one protester who was among a group that forced the driver to take them back to the scene. Four were injured in the accident. Elsewhere, thousands of demonstrators, shouting "God is Great and Muhammad is his Prophet!" and "Down with Denmark!" marched from the largest mosque in downtown Nairobi to Kenya's foreign ministry, where they were expected to deliver a protest note. Other demonstrators walked out of the Sar Ali Mosque, outside downtown Nairobi, and burned Danish flags and shouted anti-Denmark slogans there. About 300 protesters began a march to the city center. Protests also erupted after Friday prayers in Mombasa, an Indian Ocean port city where Muslims are the majority. Thousands gathered at the Tononoka Grounds, where they burned the US and Denmark's flags. In neighboring Somalia, hundreds condemned the publication of the cartoons by the Western media during peaceful protests in Marka, a town in the Lower Shabelle Region. In Dhusamareb, capital of the central Galgudud Region, dozens of protesters marched peacefully. In Uganda, Muslim leaders condemned the publication of the cartoons in Friday sermons, and said they may hold protest marches next week. Protests have erupted around the world since the cartoons first appeared in the Danish newspaper the Jyllands-Posten. A children's book writer complained to the Jyllands-Posten that he could not find an illustrator for his book about Muhammad. The paper put the problem to several cartoonists, and published their depictions of Muhammad in September. The Danish cartoonists not only showed Muhammad's face, but added such flourishes as a bomb-shaped turban. The drawings were reprinted by several other papers in Europe or elsewhere either to illustrate stories about the controversy or to make a point about freedom of speech.