Fallout from the cartoons
The cartoon controversy has, perhaps inevitably, been uncomfortable for the EU. Several EU nations have big Muslim minorities but some also have newspapers that have reprinted the cartoons. Called on to defend freedom of speech and to intervene against government-sponsored boycotts of Danish goods, the European commission has had other problems—not least its delegation building in Gaza being overrun by Hamas militants.
When the crisis first broke, the European trade commissioner, Peter Mandelson, took Saudi Arabia to task for encouraging a consumer boycott of Danish exports—something banned by the WTO. But the wider commission…
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