Not so free anymore. “Church recalls ‘Prophet’ magazine,” from the BBC, with thanks to Steven:
The Church in Wales has appealed to 500 subscribers to its magazine to return copies after it printed a cartoon caricaturing the Prophet Muhammad.
The editor has resigned after the cartoon was published in the Church’s Welsh-language magazine Y Llan.
Some see the cartoon as an attack on Islam and there have been violent demos after they appeared in European papers.
The Archbishop of Wales apologised to the Muslim Council of Wales, which accepted the “unfortunate mistake”….
The Church in Wales printed the cartoon to illustrate an article in the February edition of Y Llan – or Church in English – about the shared ancestry of Christianity, Islam and Judaism.
The drawing – which was from the French magazine France Soir – shows the Prophet Muhammad sitting on a heavenly cloud with Buddha, and Christian and Jewish deities.
He is being told “don’t complain…we’ve all been caricatured here”.
The Archbishop of Wales Dr Barry Morgan told the BBC: “The article was perfectly ok, but for some reason, the editor decided to print one of these cartoons which was a gross error of judgement.
“It no way reflects the policy of the church in Wales and when I saw it I was totally horrified.
“We recalled all the papers, I personally picked up some from some churches and they have all been pulped.
“I’ve unreservedly apologised to my Muslim colleagues and they’ve been very gracious and I’ve said to them this in no way reflects the policy or attitude in the Church in Wales.”
Dr Morgan also personally contacted Saleem Kidwai, the Muslim Council of Wales’ general secretary, to apologise and to assure him that no offence had been intended.
Mr Kidwai said he regarded the latest publication as simply an “unfortunate mistake” and said inter-faith relations were very good in Wales and need not be jeopardised by the incident.
In a statement, the Church said it was “thoroughly investigating” how the cartoon came to be reproduced.
The Bishops of the Church in Wales have already made it clear that “they regret the publication of the cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad in various European publications, and the offence that these have caused the Muslim community”, the statement added.
Last month, a Cardiff University student union newspaper was withdrawn after it printed a different cartoon.
Gair Rhydd – Welsh for Free Word – recalled 8,000 copies, suspended its editor and issued a public apology.