British cartoon 'Fireman Sam' won't be investigated after bizarrely showing character 'treading on Koran'

Fireman SamYouTube/Hit Entertainment‘Fireman Sam’

Ofcom, the British media regulator, has decided against investigating Channel 5 cartoon “Fireman Sam” after an episode showed a character apparently treading on a copy of the Koran.

Ofcom said it would take no action against the HIT Entertainment brand, despite the episode receiving 170 complaints after it was broadcast on 28 June.

The cartoon showed a character slipping on paperwork on the fire station floor. The documents flew up in the air, with one sheet apparently featuring verses from Islamic holy book, the Koran.

Twitter users, including Miqdaad Versi, the assistant secretary general of the Muslim Council of Britain, highlighted the incident and criticised the producers.

But despite the evidence, Ofcom will not take any further action.

A spokesman said: “We received a number of complaints about a character appearing to trip on a piece of paper that might have contained text from the Qur’an. After careful assessment, we won’t be investigating.

“We studied a recording of the programme in the highest possible resolution. We found that the page did appear to contain Arabic text, but its contents could not have been deciphered, nor recognised as being from a given text.”

HIT Entertainment is yet to respond to Business Insider’s request for comment, but in July it apologised unreservedly for the incident.

At the time, it said:

“It has been brought to our attention that in an episode of ‘Fireman Sam’ (series nine, episode seven), an image of the Qur’an is briefly depicted. The page was intended to show illegible text and we deeply regret this error. We sincerely apologise for any distress or offence it may have caused.

“We will no longer be working with the animation studio responsible for this mistake. In addition, we are taking immediate action to remove this episode from circulation and we are reviewing our content production procedures to ensure this never happens again. Again, we apologise unreservedly to our viewers.”

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