Effigies burned, flags ablaze and black masked extremists on the streets: Muslim fury over Bin Laden's death erupts at Friday prayers
Last updated at 4:24 PM on 6th May 2011
Anti-American protests and threats of violent revenge rang out today as pro-Osama Bin Laden demonstrations sprang up across the Muslim world.
Following the U.S. special forces operation that captured and killed Bin Laden on Sunday, there has been criticism from religious and political leaders in the UK and Europe, while the UN has also said it wants to investigate the legality of the killing.
But in the Muslim world Bin Laden remains a hero of jihad for many and the strength of feeling was palpable today in Pakistan, the regular Friday prayers were accompanied by widespread anti-American protests.
Flag on fire: Pakistani protesters burn a representation of the Star and Stripes in protest against the killing of Osama Bin Laden in Multan
Indonesia: The Al Kaida group, which took a public oath to avenge the death of Bin Laden
Fury: A child stands at the head of a protest march by Jamaat-e-Islami hold placards in Abbottabad, Pakistan
Devotion: An Islamist kisses a picture of Osama Bin Laden during a protest in Cairo
Religious hardline groups have hit out at what they see as the Pakistani government's softness on the issue because, while it has expressed its anger over America's violation of its sovereignty, it has not condemned the killing itself, which has angered many among its vast population.
Pakistan's leaders now face criticism from all sides.
The U.S. is complaining of either vast ignorance or shameful complicity on the part of the government.
But both Islamists and ordinary Pakistanis are questioning how their leaders can stand by passively after the U.S. sent commandos deep inside the country into a garrison city to eliminate the Al Qaeda chief.
At the same time, suspicions that some Pakistani security forces might have known he was hiding in the country threaten to strain already uneasy ties with Washington.
'The country's political and military leadership should immediately resign as they have failed to ensure the country's integrity,' said Fareed Ahmed Paracha, a senior leader of the biggest Islamist political party, Jamaat-e-Islami, at a rally in the eastern city of Lahore.
'This is an attack on Pakistan's sovereignty.'
England: Muslim protesters clash with police outside the American Embassy in London
Egypt: Islamists, carrying a picture of the late Al Qaeda leader march on the U.S. embassy after the weekly Friday prayer in Cairo
Turkey: Pro-Islamic demonstrators set fire to the flags of the U.S., Israel and Britain after saying a special prayer for Bin Laden at the courtyard of Fatih mosque in Istanbul
Russia: Al Qaeda today confirmed the death of Bin Laden but these followers of the extremist group Bratstvo (Brotherhood) at a rally in front of the U.S embassy in Kiev do not believe so
About 1,500 Islamists demonstrated near the city of Quetta, capital of Baluchistan province in the southwest, saying more figures like Bin Laden would arise to wage holy war against the United States.
'Jihad (holy war) against America will not stop with the death of Osama,' said cleric Fazal Mohammad Baraich, amid shouts of 'Down with America'.
'Osama Bin Laden is a shaheed (martyr). The blood of Osama will give birth to thousands of other Osamas.'
In Abbottabad, where the U.S. operation took place, dozens of Islamists marched through streets calling on the United States to stay out of Pakistan and Afghanistan.
'America is the world's biggest terrorist,' read one placard.
'America is the world's biggest terrorist,' read one placard.
Small protests were also held in the cities of Multan and Hyderabad.
Anti-American sentiment is running high, despite billions of dollars in U.S. aid for nuclear-armed Pakistan.
Political message: Pakistan's military has told for the U.S. to reduce its troop numbers in the country and public opinion backs the calls
Kashmir: Muslims offer funeral prayers for Bin Laden in Srinagar today, with Friday the traditional day for prayers in the Islamic world
Lebanon: Radical cleric Omar Bakri Mohammed, right, talks to worshipers about the death of Bin Laden's after Friday prayers in a mosque in the northern port city of Tripoli
Pakistan's religious parties have not traditionally done well at the ballot box, but they wield considerable influence on the streets of a country where Islam is becoming more radicalised.
The U.S. war on militancy is unpopular in Pakistan because of the perception of high civilian deaths from drone attacks against suspected militants along the Afghan border and the feeling they are a violation of the country's sovereignty.
The Pakistani government said Bin Laden's death was a milestone in the fight against militancy although it objected to the raid as a violation of sovereignty.
Pakistan has denied any knowledge of his whereabouts and the army threatened on Thursday to cut intelligence and military cooperation with the United States if it mounted more attacks.
Some Pakistanis are too overwhelmed by the daily grind in a politically and economically unstable nation that offers poor government services and education, to react to the fact that the world's most wanted man was living here for years undetected.
'This is just another instance of us becoming insensitive to all the chaos around us as a nation, and Osama's death is just another day, another incident for us,' said Jibran Jawaid, a film producer in Pakistan's biggest city, Karachi.
Huge crowd: Abdul Qadir, right, the leader of the Pakistani religious party Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam, addresses a pro-Osama Bin Laden rally near Quetta
Demonstrators prove that, despite his death, Bin Laden will remain the poster boy for Muslim extremists
Protest: Activists paraded a banner through the streets of Abbottabad, near where Bin Laden was killed, and chanted of 'death to America'
'Frankly, when people are so worried about high food prices, no power, security and everything, they cannot be blamed for being insensitive.
'A roti (bread) costs so much, bombs go off every now and then, people are robbed daily, so should they worry about that or the U.S. raid?'
But it is not just Pakistan where the anger has been clear and there were more explict threats of violent revenge in Indonesia, where more than 100 youths donned black executioner style masks and swore vengeance.
The group, calling itself Al Kaida, vowed to avenge Bin Laden's death and said it would focus attacks on the United States.
There was no indication that it had the capacity to do so but as police monitored the rally in the city of Solo, central Java, the strength of feeling was undeniable.
Armed: Bin Laden is pictured with rifle in hand, celebrating his status as a warrior
Fanning the flames: In Abbottabad hundreds of Pakistani's blocked roads by burning tyres
'One hundred youths from Solo are ready to die to take revenge on the death of Osama,' declared Choirul, a cleric in Al Kaida Solo and also a member of the Islamic Defenders Front (FPI), which has a history of violent attacks.
'His fight will not be ending.'
Several other Indonesian Islamists have hailed Bin Laden as a martyr this week, showing the continued militancy of some Southeast Asian groups, but Al Kaida is predicting a major reprisal attack.
'Osama had lived with a principle of living nobly or dying a martyr,' said Endro Sudarsono, spokesman of the Solo group.
'But the U.S. said he was a terrorist and we objected to this view. Due to this lie we are committed to avenge his death.'
Sudarsono said that the group of men, aged 20-40, were still discussing how to avenge the death, but that Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iraq were their main destinations.
There were also protests today in Kashmir and Lebanon.
Indonesia: Muslim youths who call themselves Al Kaida (Alliance of Anti-Israel and America Command) have also been protesting in Solo, in central Java
Masked men: The Indonesian group has vowed revenge for the killing of Osama Bin Laden
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