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Turkish Muslims Protest by Defacing Swedish Websites

Some Turkish hackers have targeted over 5,000 Swedish Websites during the first week of September 2007. It appears the sabotage was an expression of Muslim antagonism over a picture in a Swedish newspaper depicting Prophet Mohammed's head positioned on a dog. Associated Press reported this on October 8, 2007.

A spokesman representing the company that operates a number of these targeted Websites said a lot of the site content was erased and some of them were replaced with messages criticizing any derogatory indications about Mohammed.

The picture that artist Lars Vilks drew was published in the newspaper named Nerikes Allehanda on August 19, 2007. Reacting to the publication, Muslim groups in Sweden protested in addition to some Muslim countries like Iran and Pakistan lodging formal complaints.

According to Islam's law, there can be no drawing of the Prophet, even in favorable situations, to discourage idol worship.

Since the publication of the picture, there has been increasing attacks from Turkey, a Muslim dominated country, against various Websites in Sweden, said the Head of Sitic's Internet Incident Center, Stefan Grinneby. Sitic is the communication watchdog in Sweden. Associated Press reported this on October 8, 2007.

Grinneby remarked that there was a need for a major police investigation in order to find what motivation worked behind depicting the drawing of the Prophet. Since the attacks have been rising in the past weeks, it is fair to assume that Muslims were angry about the incident and so reacted in this manner, he said.

Approximately 1,600 Websites under the hosting service of Proinet, the company that provides servers and another 3,800 Websites under yet another company suffered the hacking attacks, Kjetil Jensen, a spokesman for Proinet said on October 7, 2007. Associated Press reported this on October 8, 2007.

TT, a news agency in Sweden, reported that much of the content of a cartoon Website for children was erased to post a message saying that there had been insults hurled at Islam's Prophet.

Meanwhile, a rebel, Abu Omar al-Baghdadi from Iraq, promised a reward of $100,000 for killing Lars Vilks and $50,000 for killing Ulf Johanssen, the editor of Nerikes Allehanda.

Related article: Turkish Hackers Target Kiwi Websites

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