Germany: Broadcaster cancels Westergaard interview

Germany: Broadcaster cancels Westergaard interview

Jyllands-Posten don't mention it in this article, but Westergaard has meanwhile been forced to go on vacation from Jyllands-Posten for security reasons.


Kurt Westergaard was supposed to appear Tuesday in an interview on ZDF's popular Markus Lanz Show, but the interview with the Danish cartoonist has come to nothing.

The German media company decided to drop the footage due to fear for their employees lives and safety during and after the show, reports gallery owner Erik Guldager, who was also supposed to have participated in the program.

"ZDF are supposedly under pressure by one or more groups. It's another example of censorship and self-censorship for fear of violent reprisals, which I deeply regret. The future looks darker than before in regard to openness, freedom and debate," says Erik Guldager of the Draupner Gallery in Skanderborg.

He thinks that violence and threats are increasingly making an impression in the debate on censorship, self-censorship and freedom of speech. So much so that the debate is often silenced.

Erik Guldager says that Westergaard was to talk about his life after the threats and he was supposed to talk about how it was to have Westergaard's cartoons in his gallery. "But yesterday an employee from ZDF called to say that filming was canceled. She said they couldn't guaranteed Kurt's safety and later admitted that they feared for their employee's lives and safety. This is further stigmatizing of Kurt".

ZDF will first comment on the case on Monday, a spokesperson told

In January auction house announced they did not wish to have a Kurt Westergaard drawing for their collection for Haiti's children.

"Based on the recent attack on Kurt Westergaard we must acknowledge that the terror threat is still of such nature that we can't predict the consequences of a sale. We value our employee's safety, so that any risk-assessment must naturally be part of our considerations," said Mette Jessen, concept-head for

The decision of the auction house was later criticized by [Danish] Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen and SF's head Villy Søvndal.

Source: JP (Danish)

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