Muslim cafe owner angry enough to bar customers; but police demand sign be removed.
By Satirat Dam-ampai of ScandAsia
After the furore over the published caricatures of the Prophet Muhammed made it to Singapore, a coffee shop there has put up a sign saying that Danish citizens were not welcome.
The sign, which said “Citizens of Denmark are not welcomed in Samar till further notice” was displayed at the entrance and also inside of the Samar café on Friday 3 February, 2006. However the sign was removed on Monday 6 after the owner of the shop was ordered by the police to do so. He has also been ordered to go to a police station for questioning.
The café supervisor Saiful Bahari told TMCNet News, "Basically we did it to express our freedom of speech because the cartoons touched on Islam and our beloved Prophet Muhammad. As a Muslim, I do feel angry with what happened as it was totally insensitive."
This cafe is located in the heavily Arab commercial area of Singapore and is owned by a Singapore citizen of Arab descent.
Last week, the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore, a governmental agency under the Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Sports, denounced the publication of the cartoons, claiming that they were intended to incite Muslim anger unnecessarily.
However, there have been no street protests in Singapore, mainly because public protests are outlawed.