|Kuwaitis sue Newsweek for allegedly insulting Islam|
KUWAIT CITY: A group of Kuwaitis have filed a case against the Arabic-language edition of Newsweek for publishing quotes from a US congressman they say insult Islam and violate the emirate's press law. Their lawyer told AFP on Tuesday his clients were suing Mohammed al-Jassim, the editor-in-chief of Kuwaiti newspaper al-Watan, which prints and distributes the Arabic magazine, and seven American reporters who wrote the English version of the article.
"I'm representing three Kuwaitis suing Newsweek but many others want to join the case," said Saudi lawyer Ahmad al-Dhafeery, who is based in Kuwait. The article in question, published in the October 2 edition, quotes remarks by Louisiana Representative John Cooksey about traditional Arabic dress. Dhafeery said his clients want to prove that what had been published was a "crime," adding that they would then demand compensation which they hoped to send to help the Afghan people.
"We respect these people's idea (but) I don't see anything in the article that deserves filing a case," Jassim told AFP from London. "I'm not sure of their purpose; maybe it's publicity," he added. Dhafeery said the case, which was filed on November 3, centres on Cooksey's quotes as well as a photograph of Muslims bent in prayer. Dhafeery described the angle from which the photo was taken as "insulting" to Muslims.
The Arabic-language edition of Newsweek went on sale in June last year following an agreement with Al-Watan in 1998. It is distributed in the Gulf, Middle East, North Africa and a number of European countries.