Extremism is Suspected in the Cartoon "South Park'

On September 8, 2008, the Basman Interregional Prosecutor's Office for the city of Moscow issued a warning concerning extremist activities to the television station :2x2.; The warning was in regard to an episode of the cartoon "South Park' which aired January 9, 2008.

In addition, the Prosecutor's Office sent a complaint to the Basman District Court to declare the content of the episode "extremist.'

The Prosecutor's Office announced that according to a conclusion by an expert from the Center for Judicial Analysis in Moscow, :the cartoon may evoke a negative reaction from the overwhelming majority of viewers, since it insults the honor and integrity of Christians and Muslims, offends the sentiments of religious believers regardless of their faith, may provoke interethnic conflict, including extremist activities, and contributes to the incitement of discord between various faiths.;

We have not seen the text of the warning or the expert's report which the Prosecutor's Office has referred to. Therefore, we are unaware of the exact episode at the center of the allegations. It is possible that the issue surrounds the episode entitled :Mr. Hankey's Christmas Classic,; in which, according to our opinion, there is no instance of extremist content.

In the past, directors of a number of religious organizations in Russia have requested that the General Prosecutor's Office revoke the license of the television station in regards to the broadcasting of "immoral films,' making emphasis on the above mentioned :Mr. Hankey's Christmas Classic.;

Moreover, on September 8, the General Prosecutor's Office issued a directive to the Rossvyazkomnadzor with a proposal to take measures concerning the channel :2x2.; Referring the experts' opinions, the Prosecutor's Office stated that 12 cartoon series, including "The Simpsons,' "Family Guy,' "Metalocalypse,' "Multirealiti,' "Lenor - the small dead girl,' "Evil Kid,' and others, were "promoting violence and hostility, pornography, and antisocial behavior, as well as were abundant in violent scene and moral and physical suffering, causing fear, panic, and horror in children.;