A person identifying himself as Osama bin Laden on Thursday emailed the project director of a Cambodian television series accused by some Cham Muslims of being disrespectful to Islam, ordering her to stop broadcasting.
The Cambodian Television Network series, “Manpower and Destiny,” has been taken off the air in response to the email, the program’s Project Director Poan Phoung Bopha said Friday.
“We are worried and afraid…. We didn’t intend to look down on anybody, we feel sorry,” she said.
The email asked Poan Phoung Bopha if she understood Islam.
“You are making Islam in Cambodia and all over the world do something against you and [CTN],” the emailer wrote. “Do you want something to happen to you and your family?”
“Cambodian Muslim[s] will fight back…some days,” the email warned.
Poan Phoung Bopha said the email was not written by bin Laden.
“It’s fake. Maybe they just want to threaten us,” she said.
Kit Meng, CTN president, declined comment on Friday.
“Manpower and Destiny” began airing three times a week starting Jan 31 and depicts two tourists from Malaysia and China.
Jakya Adam, secretary of state for the Ministry of Cult and Religion, on Thursday accused the show of ridiculing the sacred places of Islam.
The bulk of the controversy was generated by the portrayal of the Chinese character as hardworking, while the Malay Muslim is shown to be lazy and idiotic.
“We didn’t promote the Chinese character and demote the Muslim character,” Poan Phoung Bopha said.
“We don’t mean to say the Muslim character is lazy,” she added.
(Additional reporting by William Shaw)