A children's pantomime of Aladdin, staged in Auckland at the weekend, ended with the character of Osama bin Laden belting out a rendition of Frank Sinatra's New York, New York.


A Mt Eden parent who took his two pre-schoolers to the play at the Logan Campbell Centre on Saturday said he was appalled when "bin Laden" appeared at the end of the play - just as the wicked uncle Jasar was transported back to the cave by the genie.

Later the character signed books with "Love Osama", a reference to the al Qaeda terrorist leader who appeared in videotape which emerged at the weekend and electrified the United States presidential battle.

The parent who saw the Auckland pantomime has complained to Southern Stars Charitable Trust, the organisation which commissioned the play and donates the profits to Radio Lollipop.

The inclusion of "bin Laden" was callous, he said, a "calculated political statement".

"It was totally out of context and bizarre," said the parent. "I spoke to a few people afterwards and they couldn't believe it.


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