Violent protests in Niger leave 10 dead, churches and other sites torched
"Leave Gaza, you French, or we will slaughter you," Palestinian protesters reportedly say
Peaceful protests over Charlie Hebdo reported from Somalia to Chechnya
Violent protests have erupted in parts of the world over the latest issue of the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.
While there have also been largely peaceful protests, authorities from Africa to the Middle East are seeing clashes in the streets – and seeking ways to tamp down the uproar among Muslims furious over depictions of the Prophet Mohammed.
Niger: 10 dead, churches destroyed
The deadliest violence has been in Niger, where authorities report 10 people killed. Churches and homes have been destroyed, the government said in a statement.
AFP, the France-based news wire service, said police reported that 173 people have been injured; at least 45 churches have been “set ablaze in the capital (Niamey) alone,” and a “Christian school and orphanage were also set alight.” Numerous sites were pillaged before being burned.
Video from Niamey showed protesters waving Qurans and yelling “God is great” while tearing apart Bibles and throwing them onto the ground.
A bar owned by people from France could also be seen burning.
Three days of mourning began Monday, the government announced.
Pakistan: Photographer shot and wounded
In Karachi, Pakistan, police used tear gas and water cannons to disperse protesters outside the French consulate.
A Pakistani photographer for AFP was shot and wounded, the news agency reported.
At least 200 protesters were involved in the violence, which broke out after Muslim religious parties called on supporters to condemn the cartoon following afternoon prayers, said Ahmed Chinoy, chief of Karachi’s Citizen Police Liaison Committee.
Images from the scene showed police in running street fights with demonstrators.
Those protests came after Pakistan’s parliament unanimously passed a resolution condemning the caricatures printed in Charlie Hebdo.
In Algeria, clashes erupted between demonstrators and police as well.
And in Jordan, “the Muslim Brotherhood organized a crowd of 2,000 protesters who clashed with police in the capital of Amman as they moved toward the French Embassy,” USA Today reported. “Police used batons to break up the gathering.”
‘Leave Gaza, you French, or we will slaughter you’
In Gaza, “Some 200 radical Islamists tried to storm the French cultural centre in Gaza City on Monday, shouting slogans threatening the lives of staff over Charlie Hebdo cartoons,” AFP reported, adding that the protesters chanted “‘Damnation upon France!’ and waved black flags adopted by jihadists.
“Leave Gaza, you French, or we will slaughter you by cutting your throats,” the protesters chanted, according to AFP.
Palestinian police arrested dozens who tried to break into the French cultural center, the report said.
The Israeli newspaper Haaretz said activists in Gaza wore uniforms similar to those of ISIS militants. The paper quoted one protester, Abu Abdallah Makdissi, as saying, “Today, we are telling France and world countries that while Islam orders us to respect all religions, it also orders us to punish and kill those who assault and offend Islam’s Prophet Mohammed.”
Largely peaceful protests reported in several nations
There have been large-scale peaceful protests reported in several African nations, including including Mali and Somalia, and parts of the Middle East including Lebanon.
Thousands from Russia’s North Caucasus gathered in Grozny, Chechnya, for a peaceful event called Love for the Prophet Mohammed, Russia’s state-run TASS news agency said. News reports estimated hundreds of thousands may have taken part.
In Senegal and Mauritania, protesters torched French flags, the French news agency France24 reported.
There were similar scenes in Iran, where protesters burned U.S. and Israeli flags.
CNN’s Sophia Saifi contributed to this report.