Monday, October 16, 2006

Literary stars convert to Islam for school

ANKARA, Turkey, Aug. 31 (UPI) -- Classic literary characters such as Pinocchio and Tom Sawyer have been converted to Islam as part of a controversial move for the Turkish school curriculum.

The move by Islamic publishing houses to insert references to the Islamic faith throughout literary classics provided to schools throughout Turkey, which is a secular state, has drawn strong opposition from the country's leaders, said Britain's Telegraph newspaper.

Turkey's first Islamic premier, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has demanded that the offending publishers be reprimanded for their decision to insert the religious references, as well as for various slang and insulting terms aimed at the president and the prime minister.

There has been no reported response from the publishers regarding the incident thus far and Huseyin Celik, Turkey's Education minister, has sworn to take legal action against any further publications.

"If there are slang and swear words, we will sue them for using the ministry logo." he told the Telegraph.

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