2006 News Story

Norwegian ambassador to Saudi Arabia apologizes for blasphemous cartoons

Norway’s ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Jan Bugge-Mahrt, apologized on behalf of the Norwegian government and people to Muslims throughout the world for the publication of blasphemous cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) by a Norwegian newspaper.

Bugge-Mahrt issued the apology during a meeting in Riyadh today with Dr Saleh bin Homaid, chairman of the Shura Council. The ambassador commented that while Norway enjoys freedom of expression, such freedom does not mean insulting the beliefs of others.

Dr Homaid praised Norway’s apology, noting that the publication of such offensive material drives a wedge between nations and religions. He also condemned attacks on Danish and Norwegian embassies in some Arab and Muslim countries, remarking that such actions do not help resolve the problem.