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Star Wars anger Turkish Muslims

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The Austrian Turkish community has accused the popular line of construction toys, Lego, of racism after the release of a new Star Wars model that resembles the historic Hagia Sophia mosque in Istanbul. “What Lego is recommending parents to buy as a Christmas gift? The answer is pure racism”, the Turkish Cultural Community of Austria said in a statement cited by The Huffington Post on January 24, 2013. The group was referring to a newly released Jabba the Hutt Set.
It accused the giant toy manufacturer of modeling Jabba, the Star Wars villain’s palace, on the famous Hagia Sophia mosque in Istanbul and a minaret, adding that the firm is linking evil to Muslim places of worship. On its website the group in Austria has posted a photo of the box plus an image of the mosque, saying the roof was a one to one copy of the roof of the mosque. It also complains that the muezzin is portrayed as a criminal with an axe and machine gun, while machine guns are stored in the minaret. The community called on Lego to apologize for affronting religious and cultural feelings. They added that they were considering legal action against Lego, urging parents not to buy toys of war or toys of discrimination. Lego has rejected the accusations, denying any link between Jabba’s Palace and the mosque.