ALGIERS, Sept 20, 2012 (AFP) -
ALGIERS, Sept 20, 2012 (AFP) –
Washington sought a retraction Thursday from an Algerian newspaper that linked the slain US ambassador to Libya with the US-based producer of a movie mocking Islam that has sparked protests around the world.
The US embassy in Algiers said Ambassador Chris Stevens, killed with three other Americans in an assault by an angry mob on the consulate in Libya’s second city Benghazi, had no connection to the film.
It described a photograph published by the Arabic-language Ennahar newspaper that purported to show Stevens with the movie’s producer Sam Bacile and pro-Israeli French philosopher Bernard-Henry Levy as “doctored” and the accompanying article as “fictitious.”
“Ambassador Stevens had no association with the reprehensible and disgusting film and cartoon or the men behind them,” the embassy statement said
“The US embassy urges Ennahar to retract this article and photo and not spread rumours that may result in misunderstanding and a violent reaction.
“As Secretary (of State Hillary) Clinton said last week, the United States government had nothing to do with this movie. We reject its message and its contents. We find it disgusting and reprehensible.”
The Ennahar article sought to make a link between the US-produced low-budget movie “Innocence of Muslims” and cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed published on Wednesday by French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo.
The paper’s front page carried a photograph of a smiling Levy reading a copy of a previous issue of the French weekly that also offended conservative Muslims and the headline: “The Zionist Levy behind the campaign to attack the Prophet.”
Contacted by AFP by telephone, Ennahar director Anis Rahmani said he was currently abroad.
But he insisted: “At Ennahar, we never use lies or trickery to defend the cause of our Prophet.”