United Nations: The UNSC has expressed deep concern over a series of attacks against Western embassies across the Arab world over a film deemed offensive to Islam, even as a top UN official asked people not to give publicity to the "malicious and deliberately provocative" movie.

In a press statement, the 15-nation Security Council condemned in the "strongest terms" the violent attacks on embassies and consular premises in Egypt, Sudan, Libya, Yemen and other countries that have left several people dead.

The protests have spread to over 15 countries across the world, especially in the Arab world. The protests have also spread to Bangladesh, Iran and Indonesia.

It said the very nature of diplomatic premises is peaceful and among the core functions of diplomats is the promotion of better understanding across countries and cultures. Noting that the acts of violence are "unjustifiable" regardless of who commits them and their motivations, the Council called on all authorities to take all appropriate steps to protect diplomatic and consular premises against any intrusion or damage.

Meanwhile, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay also strongly condemned the violent reactions to the movie, asking people not to give publicity to the film that portrays a "distorted" image of Muslims.

Pillay said she understands the need of people to protest against the movie but stressed that the protests should be peaceful in nature.

"The film is malicious and deliberately provocative and portrays a disgracefully distorted image of Muslims," Pillay said in a statement.

"I fully understand why people wish to protest strongly against it, and it is their right to do so peacefully."


(Agencies)


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