Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten stands by its cartoon about the Chinese outbreak of coronavirus, despite calls from China to apologize.
The cartoon showed the Chinese flag but, instead of yellow stars, there are drawings of viruses.
In its own story on the controversy, Jyllands-Posten‘s editor-in-chief Jacob Nybroe said, according to a Google Translate: “We can’t apologize for something we don’t think is wrong. We have no intention of demeaning or mocking, nor do we think the drawing does.”
In an opinion leader column, read via Google Translate, the paper defended the cartoon, saying in response to demands for apologies: “the answer is of course ‘no’ for the simple reason that Jyllands-Posten did nothing wrong but simply used his freedom of speech – within the scope of the law – to describe a current case that is currently occupying the entire world.” The column further denied the cartoon was intended to offend China but instead describe a news event.
According to the Associated Press, the Chinese Embassy in Copenhagen criticized the cartoon as “an insult to China,” but the Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederksen argued cartoons are protected through freedom of expression “and we will not change that.”
Jyllands-Posten published cartoons of Muhammad back in 2005, sparking controversy. But, in 2015, the newspaper made the decision that, in order to keep its staff safe, it would not republish the Muhammad cartoons that touched off the terrorist attack on the offices of French satire magazine Charlie Hebdo.
iMediaEthics has written to Jyllands-Posten.