Rapper posts Palestine map on Twitter

Jan. 13, 2013 at 2:18 PM
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BERLIN, Jan. 13 (UPI) -- German rapper Bushido sparked controversy when he changed his Twitter profile picture to a map of the Middle East next to text that said "Free Palestine."

Bushido made the change Friday, The Local.de reported.

He did not explain the map, in which Israel and the Palestinian territories are defined as one country, filled in with black, white, green and red -- the colors of the Palestinian flag.

Critics and politicians have take offense to the picture, though, and have condemned Bushido for posting it.

"This map does not serve peace, it sows hatred," German Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich told Bild am Sonntag on Sunday. Friedrich also demanded that Bushido remove the picture immediately.

"Bushido must remove this picture immediately from his Twitter page, or he will no longer be able to serve as an example of successful integration," Friedrich said, referring to Bushido's image makeover -- the rapper's earlier work contained violent, homophobic, misogynistic and anti-Semitic lyrics.

Bushido even received a "Bambi" award for successful integration after his transformation. The award may now be rescinded. The rapper, whose real name is Anis Mohamed Youssef Ferchichi, was born of a Tunisian father and a German mother.

"We're looking into the incident and will react accordingly," said Patricia Riekel, head of the Tribute to Bambi Institute responsible for giving out the awards.

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