Media News - Friday, September 21, 2012
U.S. Embassy advertisements condemning an anti-Islam video appeared on Pakistani television on Thursday in an attempt to undercut anger against the United States, where the film was produced. The ads reflected efforts by the U.S. government to distance itself from the video in a country where anti-American sentiment already runs high. Violence linked to the movie has left at least 30 people in seven countries dead, including the American ambassador to Libya. Two people have died in protests in Pakistan. In recent days, the decision by a French satirical magazine to release cartoons crudely depicting the prophet has added to the tension, as may the upcoming issue of the German satirical magazine Titanic. The magazine's co-editor Martin Sonneborn said it was up to readers to decide whether the cover of an Arab wielding a sword actually depicts the Prophet Muhammad. Most outrage appears linked to the amateurish movie, which portrays the prophet as a fraud, womanizer and child molester. The television ads in Pakistan feature clips of President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton during press appearances in Washington in which they condemned the video. Their words were subtitled in Urdu. The advertisements end with the seal of the American Embassy in Islamabad, the Pakistani capital. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said the ad was produced by the embassy, which spent USD 70,000 to air the 30-second spot on seven Pakistani television stations. Pakistan is the only country where the ads are running. The embassy wanted to run the ads because it determined that the messages of Obama and Clinton were not reaching enough of the Pakistani public through regular news reporting, Nuland said. (AP)
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