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TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iran's best-selling newspaper has launched a competition to find the best cartoon about the Holocaust in retaliation for the publication in many European countries of caricatures of the Prophet Mohammad.
The Brussels-based Conference of European Rabbis (CER) denounced the idea and urged the Muslim world to do likewise.
The daily paper Hamshahri said the contest was designed to test the boundaries of free speech -- the reason given by many European newspapers for publishing the cartoons of the Prophet.
"A serious question for Muslims ... is this: 'does Western free speech allow working on issues like America and Israel's crimes or an incident like the Holocaust or is this freedom of speech only good for insulting the holy values of divine religions?'" the paper said on Tuesday.
Davoud Kazemi, who is in charge of the contest, told Reuters that each of the 12 winners would have their cartoons published and receive two gold coins (worth about $140 each) as a prize.
In Paris, CER President Joseph Sitruk, who is also Chief Rabbi of France, said: "The Iranian regime has plummeted to new depths if it regards the deaths of six million Jews as a matter for humor or to score cheap political points.
"Sadly, we are not surprised by this action," he said, recalling Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's calls last year for Israel to be "wiped off the map" and his dismissal of the Holocaust as a myth.
In a statement issued by the CER, which represents chief rabbis from over 40 European countries, Sitruk said the Iranian government menaced Jews and the whole international community.
Sitruk noted that European religious leaders had condemned the publication of images likely to offend believers' feelings.
"This is a test for the Muslim world to react immediately to condemn their own co-religionists in Iran for such obscene behavior as we condemned those who sought to insult them," he said.
Iranian protesters hurled petrol bombs and stones at the Danish Embassy in Tehran for a second successive day on Tuesday.
Iran announced it had cut all trade ties with Denmark because of the cartoons and hundreds of protesters hurled rocks and fire bombs at the Danish embassy on Monday night.
A Danish newspaper first published the cartoons in September, and newspapers in Norway and a dozen other countries reprinted them last month.
Originally posted by SpinDropSmile
Hey I understand that this situation has gone way crazy and I agree with 2 wrongs don't make a right. But, remember there was a wrong in the first place that should never have happened. All the worlds eyes our on the muslims and I have seen the cartoon and it is very tastless! I find it hard to say its something to laugh at when you see all the distruction and death that has come over these cartoons. I'm not saying the Muslims are right in all there distruction. But, I find its statemenets like yours that make the world untolerable when it comes to others cultures.
Hows that for comedy
Step outside your bubbles and see the world for what it really is...
Originally posted by Valorian
Hey I wonder if they will accept Danish cartoonist entries hahaha
Originally posted by Riwka
At loooong last Ahmadinedschad has realized the Holocaust is no myth.
You are correct.
Originally posted by Yetichi
i definitely believe that the jews and americans were behind these cartoons as part of the pretext to war with iran. the first thing all the western world said was "FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION!". we are just be conditioned into accepting the upcoming war.
The Danish editor behind the publication of caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad that ignited deadly riots in the Muslim world said Wednesday he's trying to coordinate with an Iranian paper soliciting cartoons on the Holocaust.
"My newspaper is trying to establish a contact with the Iranian newspaper, and we would run the cartoons the same day as they publish them," Flemming Rose said Wednesday in an interview on CNN's "American Morning."
The Iranian newspaper Hamshahri said Tuesday it would hold the competition to test whether the West extends the principle of freedom of expression to the Nazi genocide as it did to the caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad.
Iran Newspaper Increases Reward for Holocaust Cartoon
While, Iran Cartoon House President Mesud Socavi answered question of journalists about the competition, he announced the first three winners, will get $25,000 and 12 others will be given “valuable prices.”
Socayi defending “the Holocaust competition prize is the biggest cartoon prize in the world”, noted the prizes will be given by various individuals and institutions.
Socayi said “Because of the competition, I have received death threats, but they only strengthen our determination to go on our way.”
Informing the web site www.irancartoon.com... was hacked, Socai said “This is a sign that the West does not believe in the freedom of speech.”