||Sudanese Minister of Defense Abdel Rahim Mohammad Hussein rejected a request from the Danish Minister of Defense to visit Sudan to express rejection of the publication of cartoons on the prophet Mohammed (PBUM). Ph: Archives.|
"We have rejected a request from the Danish Minister of Defense to visit Sudan, to express our rejection of the publication of cartoons on our prophet," said the Sudanese Minister of Defense, Abdel Rahim Mohammad Hussein.
"Sudan's position is justified by its rejection of the blemishing of Islam or any other religion," he added.
According to the official agency Suna, the Sudanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs has called on all Sudanese companies and institutions to stop the importation of Danish products and freeze all financial transactions with Denmark.
These decisions join a chain of measures taken recently by a number of Arab countries against Denmark and Norway.
The Danish daily, Jyllands-Posten, published on Sept. 30, 2005, 12 cartoons entitled "faces of Mohammad," which angered the Arab world and stirred a crescendo of protests.
Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen has rejected the demand for talks made by 12 Muslim countries' ambassadors in Copenhagen including Turkey's and supported the cartoons publication on grounds of "freedom of press and expression".
According to an article published in the website NowPublic.com, the Danish cartoons, found insulting to the Prophet Mohammed, caused Denmark's 22 former ambassadors to react strongly.
In a joint declaration they issued in the country's bestselling newspaper the Politiken, the ambassadors said: "What was done is a violation of Islamic tradition. We are extremely perturbed."
Harsh retorts against Danish Prime Minister Rasmussen followed: "Using freedom against the beliefs of a minority should not be our stance."
Rasmussen and the newspaper Jyllands Posten were severely criticized in the declaration, underlining that freedom of expression cannot be used in a way to offend Muslims.
The Council of Europe, concerned about the developments, warned the Danish government last week against publications provoking enmity.