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MINSK, 22 February 2006 (RFE/RL) -- The Belarusian Foreign Ministry has condemned the decision of an independent Minsk publication to reprint controversial cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad.
"Zhoda," a weekly, reprinted the cartoons on 17 February to illustrate an article about the deadly protests sparked by the images across the Muslim world.
The Foreign Ministry said the publication was "clearly provocative" and goes against official policy. Prosecutors have been asked to launch an investigation into the publication.
"Zhoda" is the first publication in Belarus to print any of the cartoons first printed in the Danish daily "Jyllands-Posten."
"Zhoda" is seen as being closely allied to the Hramada Social Democratic Party led by Alyaksandr Kazulin, a candidate in presidential elections to be held on 19 March.