Wednesday, April 23, 2008


Protesters have accused Denmark and the Netherlands of insulting Islam.
The Dutch and Danish governments have evacuated their embassies in the Afghan capital, Kabul, in response to threats.
The decision followed protests against a cartoon of the Prophet Muhammad reprinted by Danish newspapers and a film by Dutch politician Geert Wilders.
Danish intelligence officials warned of an "aggravated" terrorist threat but a spokesman in The Hague gave no details.
Staff from the Danish embassy in Algeria and the Dutch mission in Pakistan were moved some days ago.

Dutch foreign ministry spokesman Bart Rijs told the BBC News website that the 15 Dutch and 35 Afghan employees had been moved to an undisclosed place in Kabul but were still working.
"It cannot be excluded that this has some relation with the film of Mr Wilders," he said.
The Dutch MP's film was released on the internet in March, prompting formal complaints and protests in some Muslim countries which linked the film to the reprinting of a Danish cartoon of Muhammad with a bomb in his turban.
Danish newspaper editors decided to reprint the cartoon, first published in 2006, after intelligence officials said they had uncovered a plot to kill one of the cartoonists behind the original 12 images.
The Danish foreign ministry said that the threat was serious and that its employees had been moved to safe locations in Kabul and Algiers.
"We have new information and we have to take that into serious consideration. We decided it would be better to move our staff, although the embassies are up and running," said spokesman Erik Laursen.
The Danish Security and Intelligence Service is said to have highlighted risks in Northern Africa, the Middle East, Afghanistan and Pakistan.
The Afghan embassy employs five Danish citizens and a number of local people. The building in Algiers has a total staff of seven.



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