Iran's most popular daily newspaper, Hamshahri, is set to initiate a Holocaust cartoon contest in what it says is a response to cartoons disparaging Islam's prophet Muhammad published in a Danish newspaper.
"This will be an international cartoon competition on the topic of the Holocaust," said Farid Mortazawi, the paper's graphic editor.
The editor added the newspaper intends to fight back by claiming the publication of Holocaust cartoons is done in the name of freedom of expression.
"Western newspapers published these caricatures, which constitute desecration, under the pretense of freedom of expression," he said. "Let's see if they mean what they say once we publish Holocaust caricatures."
Meanwhile, Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi, a leading Muslim Brotherhood cleric, has condemned the harsh reactions to the cartoons among Muslim
communities around the world.
Speaking on al-Jazeera's Sharia program, Qaradawi said: "The acts of destruction carried out by a minority of people in capitals around the world are unacceptable as a response to what European newspaper published. We never called on people to burn cars. We call on you to show the fury in an intelligent way as to avoid unthinkable damage."
"We condemn those who are attacking us when we do not attack them. We are bound by the laws of Allah and to his instructions," said Qaradawi, who has a major influence on the Arab Muslim community and on Muslim communities in the West
Qaradawi attacks freedom of speech
Responding to a question about churches damaged in Beirut by rioting masses, Qaradawi said: "This is unacceptable. We have seen Muslim imams preventing people from doing this, but it seems there are those who will exploit the rage of the people to pour fuel on the fire."
Qaradawi has called for "sanctions on countries that published the cartoons in their newspapers. We demand an international law forbidding religions from being humiliated, and we held a rally as a response to these injuries. These are the ways to respond."
Qaradawi also condemned freedom of speech, saying: "No one has this freedom. When you drive in a car, you can't swerve right and left because there are other people on the road with you. You must drive according to traffic laws."
Meanwhile, 400 Iranian protesters threw rocks and Molotov cocktails at the Danish Embassy in Teheran. Earlier, the Austrian Embassy in the Iranian capital was attacked.