Canadian Jewish Political Affairs Committee
Mohammad Cartoon Controversy

[8 February 2006]

STATEMENT BY MINISTER MACKAY ON REACTION TO CARICATURES OF PROPHET MOHAMMED

Foreign Affairs Minister Peter MacKay today issued the following statement:

“The publication of cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed has caused offence to Muslims and non-Muslims around the world and in Canada.

“Freedom of expression is a legally enshrined principle in Canada, but it must be exercised responsibly. We commend those Canadians who have acted appropriately.

“However, we condemn the violent protests that have occurred in some parts of the world, and find the attacks on foreign diplomatic missions particularly deplorable.

“This sensitive issue highlights the need for a better understanding of Islam and of Muslim communities. Respect for cultural diversity and freedom of religion is a fundamental principle in Canada. The Government of Canada will continue to promote a better understanding of Islam internationally, in partnership with Muslim communities.”