Danish govt to brief parliament in cartoon protests

The Danish government was to brief parliament today on the attacks on Danish diplomatic missions during protests over a newspaper’s cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed.

Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen and Foreign Minister Per Stig Moeller were to meet with the Foreign Policy Committee in the afternoon.

Fogh Rasmussen and Moeller then planned to hold a joint news conference.

The Danish embassies in Damascus and Beirut were set on fire in weekend protests and large chaotic demonstrations have taken place outside other Danish embassies; two demonstrators were killed in a protest in the Afghan capital Kabul yesterday.

The Foreign Ministry said the embassy in Jakarta, Indonesia, has been temporarily closed because of fears it would be stormed.

Niels Erik Andersen, Denmark’s ambassador to Indonesia, said Muslim groups throughout Indonesia had been burning Danish flags and effigies of Fogh Rasmussen.

“A Muslim organisation said it was looking for Danes on the streets,” Andersen said.

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