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Last Updated: Friday, 7 April 2006, 02:53 GMT 03:53 UK
Indonesian Playboy goes on sale
The magazine's director, Erwin Arnada, holds the first edition
The first edition will be available in major cities
An Indonesian version of Playboy has gone on sale in the world's most populous Muslim nation.

A spokesman for the magazine, which has promised to tone down its erotic photographs, said copies would be available in major cities on Friday.

The launch has drawn criticism from Muslim clerics, who condemn the magazine as a corrupting influence.

Earlier this year there were street protests in many towns when the magazine announced its plans to launch.

The magazine has no photographs of naked women and its pictures are less racy than those in similar magazines already on sale in the country, said a photographer from the Associated Press news agency, who saw an early copy.

But the country's highest Islamic body, the Indonesia Council of Clerics, was unmoved.

A Muslim protester displays a defaced Playboy logo during an anti-pornography rally in Jakarta
Some Indonesian Muslim are angered by the launch

"We reject Playboy magazine because it is an icon of pornography," council official Maruf Amin told AP.

"By insisting to publish, they are daring to face the opposition of society."

Conservative Indonesians have taken to the streets several times since the January announcement to express their opposition.

Pornography, although illegal, is readily available in Indonesia's markets.

But police have been cracking down on it in recent months and parliament is considering a controversial anti-pornography bill.

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