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Last Updated: Monday, 6 November 2006, 16:26 GMT
Cartoons protest man apologises
Court graphic
A British Muslim arrested after a protest over the publication of cartoons depicting the prophet Muhammad has told a court he got carried away.

Web designer Mizanur Rahman, 23, from Palmers Green, London, denies charges of inciting murder and using racist words or behaviour last February.

The Old Bailey heard police filmed him calling for planes to be shot down and the deaths of UK and US troops in Iraq.

Mr Rahman said he did not "recognise" himself and apologised for his words.

He told the court: "I didn't think about what I was saying or the consequences..."

"I feel almost ashamed. I feel the words didn't make sense. I didn't think anyone would take me seriously."

'Venting frustration'

Some 300 protesters joined the demonstration in central London following the publication of the cartoons by a Danish newspaper.

Mr Rahman, who is married with a young child, told the court he had copied what some of the others had been saying when he was handed a megaphone.

He said placards he had carried calling for the beheading of people who insulted Islam had been handed to him.

"I didn't intend for anyone to be harmed or attacked, let alone to be killed," he said.

"The majority of this was a prayer. When I was given the mic, I didn't know what to say. I said what other people had said during the demo and what was on the placards.

"I was repeating what I heard in other speeches."

The court heard Mr Rahman had also called for "another 9/11 all over Europe".

Questioned about the remarks, he told the jury: "I would never condone any kind of killing.

"I was venting my frustration."

The trial continues.


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