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Muslims in Asia protest Israeli attacks on Lebanon JAKARTA - Muslims in Asia held angry but peaceful protests on Friday against Israel's bombardment of Lebanon, denouncing the Jewish state and demanding the United Nations take action to halt the violence. Demonstrators in Malaysia burned Israeli flags. In Indonesia they accused Israel of atrocities against civilians. In Bangladesh marchers shouted "Down with Israel.''

Malaysia's Foreign Minister, who will next week host a gathering of his Southeast Asian counterparts and meetings U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is due to attend, urged a ceasefire between Israel and Hezbollah fighters. "We don't want an expansion of the crisis, we want a ceasefire...we want to see a more balanced and just world,'' Syed Hamid Albar told reporters.

The conflict would be discussed at the annual Association of Southeast Asian Nations meetings in Kuala Lumpur next week, he said. "Unless this matter is arrested quickly and addressed in an appropriate manner, I think we are going to see human carnage and human suffering expanding and the situation growing worse,'' the foreign minister said. Protesters gathered Friday after traditional Islamic prayers.


A similar protest involving about 500 people was held in Ambon, a city in central Indonesia, which is home to more Muslims than any other country. In Malaysia's largest city, hundreds of protesters, many of them linked to the ruling party, rallied outside the U.S. Embassy, chanting, "Destroy Israel, down with Israel.'' Demonstrators set afire about one dozen Israeli flags.

Activists handed U.S. officials a memorandum demanding that the U.N. Security Council take action to stop Israel's bombardment. Anti-riot police and a truck with a water cannon mounted on it guarded the embassy, but took no action. "We demand the U.N. Security Council pass a resolution to stop Israeli atrocities. This is nothing short of murder and genocide,'' said Khairy Jamaluddin, the deputy leader of the ruling party's youth wing and an organizer of the protest.

"Israel is a terrorist state and it must be brought to justice,'' said Khairy, who is also the son-in-law of Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. In Bangladeshi capital of Dhaka, about 300 Muslims marched through the streets outside the main Baitul Mokarram mosque carrying banners reading, "Stop attacks on Lebanon'' and "Down with Israel.'' No violence was reported.


Related blog entries (category 'Protests') Related blog entries (category 'Protests'):
16 July 2006 · Indonesian protesters condemn Israel's attacks
08 April 2002 · Thousands rally against Israeli action


Posted in Protests @ 21 July 2006 14:17 CET by Jeroen · 'Blog' RSS feed · permalink






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