BERLIN - A Mozart opera production in which the severed head of the Muslim prophet Mohammed is shown on stage was banned by one of Berlin's main opera houses yesterday because of fears that the work might provoke a terrorist attack by Islamic extremists.
The decision, by Berlin's Deutsche Opera to cancel a forthcoming presentation of the Mozart work Idomeneo provoked uproar among politicians and German theatre directors who said the opera house had allowed itself to be intimidated.
"This is mad," said Wolfgang Schaeuble, the German Interior Minister who has invited Muslim leaders to attend an Islamic conference in Berlin, "Taking such measures is ridiculous and totally unacceptable," he added.
Kirstin Harms, the Deutsche Oper's manager said the company had decided to remove Idomoneo from its programme after receiving information from Berlin police which suggested that the work could provoke what she described as an "incalculable security risk" to the public if it was shown.
Yay for letting terrorism win.