The Pope Must Die! UK Evening Standard
A notorious Muslim extremist told a demonstration in London yesterday that the Pope should face execution. Anjem Choudary said those who insulted Islam would be "subject to capital punishment". His remarks came during a protest outside Westminster Cathedral on a day that worldwide anger among Muslim hardliners towards Pope Benedict XVI appeared to deepen.
The pontiff yesterday apologised for causing offence during a lecture last week. Quoting a medieval emperor, his words were taken to mean that he called the prophet Mohammed "evil and inhuman". He insisted he was "deeply sorry" but his humbling words did not go far enough to silence all his critics or quell the violence and anger he has triggered. A nun was shot dead in Somalia by Islamic gunmen and churches came under attack in Palestine.
Choudary's appeal for the death of Pope Benedict was the second time he has been linked with apparent incitement to murder within a year. The 39-year-old lawyer organised demonstrations against the publication of cartoons of Mohammed in February in Denmark. Protesters carried placards declaring "Behead Those Who Insult Islam".
Yesterday he said: "The Muslims take their religion very seriously and non-Muslims must appreciate that and that must also understand that there may be serious consequences if you insult Islam and the prophet.
"Whoever insults the message of Mohammed is going to be subject to capital punishment."He added: "I am here have a peaceful demonstration. But there may be people in Italy or other parts of the world who would carry that out. "I think that warning needs to be understood by all people who want to insult Islam and want to insult the prophet of Islam."
As well as placards attacking the Pope such as "Pope go to Hell", his followers outside the country's principal Roman Catholic church also waved slogans aimed at offending the sentiments of Christians such as "Jesus is the slave of Allah".