Afghan Protest Over Anti-Muslim Film Turns Violent

 @AmruthaGayathri
on September 17 2012 6:32 AM
Kabul
An Afghan firefighter extinguishes a fire during a demonstration in Kabul on Sept. 17, 2012 REUTERS

Hundreds of demonstrators attacked the security personnel and burned cars early Monday during protests in the Afghan capital against an anti-Islamic film that has been creating ripples in the Middle East, North Africa and some parts of Asia.

Kabul's Jalalabad road leading to the U.S. Embassy in Kabul witnessed violent scenes when demonstrators started pelting stones at the policemen and at Camp Phoenix, a U.S. military base that lies along the road while some set a police vehicle on fire, the Associated Press reported. Some 20 policemen were injured and two police vehicles burned in the violence that involved about 300 Afghans, news reports said.

The movie, widely dubbed "Innocence of Muslims," is a low-budget U.S. production that portrays Prophet Mohamed as a fraudster, womanizer and a child molester.

The U.S. Ambassador to Libya was killed in an attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi that ensued following the protests against the film. The U.S. Embassies in Egypt, Sudan and Tunisia also witnessed violent scenes outside the buildings, including forced entry and vandalism.

One person was killed and several others injured and arrested in Pakistan Sunday when the police fired tear gas and water cannons at the protesters in Karachi after they broke through the barricade and reached the outer wall of the U.S. Consulate, the Associated Press reported.

A day after al-Qaeda in Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) called for more attacks on the U.S. embassies over the film, another militant group, Hezbollah, Sunday warned of fresh protests.

The AQAP said in a statement that the incident that killed Stevens "is a major one" and called for efforts aimed at "expelling the embassies of the United States from Muslim countries", more demonstrations and protests, and setting "fire to these embassies as our zealous people did in Egypt and Yemen," according to Washington-based IntelCenter.

Feeding into the frenzy, Hezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah said that the U.S. should be held accountable for the film, which was produced in the United States.

"The ones who should be held accountable and boycotted are those who support and protect the producers, namely the US administration," Nasrallah said in a televised speech.

He urged protesters to call on their leaders to express their anger too.

"We should not only express our anger at an American embassy here or there. We should tell our rulers in the Arab and Muslim world that it is 'your responsibility in the first place' and since you officially represent the governments and states of the Muslim world you should impose on the United States, Europe and the whole world that our prophet, our Quran and our holy places and honor of our Prophet be respected," he said.

Share this article