US blames Syria for not protecting embassies

The United States blamed Syria on Saturday for not protecting the Danish and Norwegian embassies that were torched by protesters angered about the depiction of the Prophet Mohammad in cartoons.

US blames Syria for not protecting embassies

The cartoons first appeared in a Danish daily. Muslims generally believe their faith forbids any image of the Prophet and consider the cartoons printed in Europe as blasphemous.

A small Norwegian Christian newspaper was one of the first outside Denmark to publish the cartoons that have now appeared in papers in Bulgaria, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Jordan, Spain, Switzerland, Hungary, New Zealand, Norway and Poland.

"The United States condemns in the strongest terms the burning of the Danish and Norwegian embassies in Damascus, Syria today, which also damaged the Chilean and Swedish embassies," White House spokesman Scott McClellan said.

"The government of Syria's failure to provide protection to diplomatic premises, in the face of warnings that violence was planned, is inexcusable," he said in a statement from Texas, where President George W. Bush is staying at his Crawford ranch.

The US State Department has told the Syrian ambassador that Syria must protect all foreign embassies and citizens in Damascus from attack, McClellan said.

"We will hold Syria responsible for such violent demonstrations since they do not take place in that country without government knowledge and support," he said.

On Friday, the United States sided with Muslims outraged that the publications publishing the cartoons put press freedom over respect for religion.

"These cartoons are indeed offensive to the belief of Muslims," State Department spokesman Kurtis Cooper said in answer to a question.

The White House commended Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen on Saturday for recent statements urging tolerance and respect for all faiths and for freedom of the press.

"We stand in solidarity with Denmark and our European allies in opposition to the outrageous acts in Syria today," the statement said.


Güncelleme Tarihi: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16