Merkel wades into opera vs Muslims row

LONDON: Another threatened ‘war of the worlds’ gloomily appeared to be in prospect on Wednesday with German Chancellor Angela Merkel wading into the row over the West’s right to free expression, 24 hours after a Berlin opera house cancelled a 225-year-old Mozart work because of concerns some scenes could enrage Muslims.

Merkel, who controversially began this debate just weeks ago when she defended Pope Benedict XVI’s right to make trenchant, incendiary observations on the role of violence in Islam, said on Wednesday that it was important for Europe to “take care that we do not retreat out of a fear of potentially violent radicals. Self-censorship out of fear is not tolerable”.


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