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Petition protesting the anti-Danish content of a Hamas-backed children's programme
Up to 170,000 Palestinians are part of a mass protest against the Hamas-owned TV station al-Aqsa for its airing of a children's programme that told viewers to kill the cartoonist responsible for the controversial Mohammed illustration, reported Berlingske Tidende newspaper.
'Around 170,000 Palestinians have signed the petition against Al-aqsa because the station is considered fanatical and extreme. We hope to collect a million signatures,' said Rolf Holmboe of the Danish representation in the Palestinian territories.
Behind the many signatures were several Palestinian media organisations from the West Bank area, known for its more moderate political stances. In the Hamas-dominated Gaza Strip, this kind of civil protest would not be possible, said Holmboe.
In response to the protests, Hazam Shaarawy, prgramme director for al-Aqsa, said yesterday that things had gotten out of control during the show which was aired live.
'Originally, we only wanted to explain that the prophet did not look like the way he was depicted in the cartoons,' he said. 'We will now ensure that better control routines are in place for live transmissions.'
However, Holmboe said it was normal practice for Al-aqsa to attack Israel, the US, president Abbas and other Palestinians who didn't support Hamas, even in children's programmes. 'Kurt Westergaard is just the latest person, the TV station wants to have killed'.