Muslims themselves were urged to boycott a planned demonstration in front of the Norwegian Parliament on Friday by an Islamic group considered to be extremist. With only around 15 participants assembled and no action a half-hour after the demonstration was due to begin, it appeared the boycott call had an effect, or simply that the demonstrators had very little support.
One local Muslim leader in Oslo claimed the organizers' attitudes, actions and slogans actually violate Islamic principles. Dr Usman Rana, the former leader of Muslimsk Studentsamfunn (the Muslim students' society) and now a practicing physician, urged fellow Muslims to stay away from the demonstration that was organized to protest Norway's presence in Afghanistan.
Police were out in force, cordoning off areas and ready for crowd control exercises because organizers had led them to believe hundreds would turn out. By 2:30pm, however, media personnel seemed to far outnumber actual demonstrators.