The Straits Times
www.straitstimes.com
Published on Sep 24, 2012
 

EU 'deplores' Pakistan bounty call for anti-Islam film

 
 

BRUSSELS (AFP) - The European Union deplored on Monday the call by a Pakistan minister for a US$100,000 (S$122,872) bounty to be put on the head of the maker of an anti-Islam film which has sparked deadly protests around the world.

"We deplore the call for a bounty," Mr Michael Mann, spokesman for EU foreign affairs head Catherine Ashton, told a press briefing.

"We are particularly concerned that this call should come from a member of the government even if the prime minister... has dissociated himself" from the remarks, Mr Mann added.

A spokesman for Pakistani Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf on Sunday rejected the bounty promised by Railways Minister Ghulam Ahmed Bilour as a "prize" for killing the filmmaker.

The producer of the film, Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, is reported to be a 55-year-old Egyptian Copt and convicted fraudster, based in Los Angeles and currently out on parole.

United States reports say Mr Nakoula wrote and produced the film, using the pseudonym Sam Bacile before being identified. Police questioned him before he went into hiding with his family.

The film has sparked outrage across the Muslim world, with protests reported in more than 20 countries and over 50 people killed in demonstrations or attacks.