British Teacher in Sudan Faces Possible Lashes For Allegedly Insulting Islam

KHARTOUM, Sudan (AP) -- Officials in Sudan have been questioning a British teacher who could face charges of insulting Islam -- a crime punishable by up to 40 lashes -- for letting young students name a teddy bear "Muhammad" in a class project.

Gillian Gibbons was arrested Sunday after one pupil's parents accused her of naming the bear after Islam's founder. Muhammad is a common name among Muslim men, but giving the name to an animal would be seen as insulting by many Muslims.

Sudanese newspapers have run a statement reportedly from the school where Gibbons taught, saying she's been "removed" and apologizing "to the students and their families and all Muslims."

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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