Egyptian court tosses lawsuit over bearded Mickey

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Bearded Mickey

Bearded Mickey

An Egypt­ian court has dis­missed one of two com­plaints over tweeted car­toons of a bearded Mickey Mouse and a veiled Min­nie Mouse.

In June, telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions mag­nate Naguib Sawiris, a bil­lion­aire Cop­tic Chris­t­ian, infu­ri­ated con­ser­v­a­tive Mus­lims with the satir­i­cal mes­sages. Both com­plaints accuse Sawiris of insult­ing Islam.

The judge at Qasr al-Nil court dis­missed the first case Tues­day, fin­ing the plain­tiff $8. The judge ruled that indi­vid­u­als who “lack legal stand­ing” made the ini­tial com­plaint, legal sources said.

How­ever, a dif­fer­ent court is slated to rule Sat­ur­day on the sec­ond case. That suit was filed by another group of lawyers, includ­ing mem­ber of par­lia­ment Mam­duh Ismail, a mem­ber of the ultra­con­ser­v­a­tive Salafist group of Islamists.

Sawiris tweeted images of Mickey with a full beard and wear­ing a tra­di­tional Islamic robe, and Min­nie wear­ing a niqab (full-face veil) with only her eyes show­ing. How­ever, her large ears and famed pink hair rib­bon were visible.

After an angry response from peo­ple who said they took off­snse, Sawiris removed the pic­tures. He tweeted: “I apol­o­gize for those who don’t take this as a joke, I just thought it was a funny pic­ture; no dis­re­spect meant. I am sorry.”

Nonethe­less, tens of thou­sands of peo­ple joined groups on Face­book and other social media con­demn­ing him. As well, con­ser­v­a­tive Mus­lim groups urged boy­cotts of the tycoon’s firms.

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