Sudanese authorities interrogate UK teacher for allegedly abusing Islam

Sudanese authorities on Monday interrogated a British teacher arrested for allegedly insulting Islam after naming a teddy bear Muhammad, taken to be a reference to Islam's chief prophet, an official Sudan Media Center said. The teacher, who the British Foreign Office identified as Gillian Gibbons, was arrested Sunday after she named the bear Muhammad and wrote the name on the toy animal, the official center said in a statement. The British Foreign Office, however, said Gibbons' seven-year-old pupils chose the name for the bear when she asked them to. The Sudan Media Center, quoting attorney Mutasim Abdalla Mohamed of the Khartoum North attorney's office, said legal procedures were under way against Gibbons, who taught at the Unity High School in Khartoum, after a complaint was filed by the Ministry of Education. The ministry was acting on the behalf of a parent of one of Gibbons' students, the center's statement said. An attempt to reach the school by telephone after school hours Monday went unanswered.