Hong Kong's Muslim community is not known for being outspoken. There are at least 170,000 Muslims in the city - from those whose families have lived here for generations to transitory Indonesian domestic workers - yet the community seems to have an unwritten law that to be Muslim in Hong Kong means keeping quiet, no matter what injustices affect your brothers and sisters in other countries. 'Hong Kong is different, we are different, we are peaceful people,' is the mantra repeated by leaders. But scratch the surface and the difference between Muslim minorities in Hong Kong and other parts of the world is simple - money and power. Here, many Muslims have plenty of both. So when protests against the publication of cartoons that hold the Prophet Mohammed up for ridicule prompted fury across much of the Muslim world, authorities did not brace for an eruption of violence in Hong Kong. There was only a minor increase in police security to defend property at foreign consulates from those who would seek recompense, like the fanatics who stormed the Danish consulate in Jakarta and set ablaze the same consulate in Beirut and Damascus. But the anger was there. Muslims sought out the city's imams, wanting somewhere to vent fury that had been simmering for weeks from what was considered the gravest of insults. And for the first time in almost two decades - since protests over the publication of Salman Rushdie's novel, The Satanic Verses - Hong Kong will see Muslim pride on the streets. The exact details of the demonstration are still to be worked out. There has been much debate and hand-wringing within different organisations about whether a demonstration would be in the best interests of a community that relishes its low profile. Naseem Khan, from the international Muslim NGO Idara Minhaj-ul-Quran, believes the most important factor in any protest is that it must represent a clear display of unity among all of Hong Kong's Muslims. However, while Asian-based groups such as the Islamic Federation of Hong Kong and the chief imam of the Kowloon Mosque, Mohammed Arshad, say all groups have been contacted for the proposed demonstration next Friday, which is open to all, the truth is far more complex. When contacted by the South China Morning Post, many organisations representing a largely ethnic Chinese core had no plans to take part in any protest action, and in many instances had not been asked to participate. While the storm of the cartoons has been labelled a 'clash of civilisations' between the west and Islam, the depictions of the cartoons and how to express anger about them have also revealed a divide within Hong Kong's Muslim community. What is clear is that the anger is real and the insult felt acutely by all believers. The difference is how they say this anger should be expressed, with Chinese groups traditionally not known for taking their feelings to the streets. Hakima Ma, from the Islamic Youth Association, said Imam Yang Xing-ben had appealed to Muslims for calm as more came to him, angry at what they saw as a blatant attack on the the Prophet. 'He was telling them to calm down, to take it easy,' Ms Ma said. 'There was a lot of anger and the imam has tried to cool it down. There have been hot tempers. The western world has been pushing too much.' The imam told them there would be no public protest and that the Koran did not ask Muslims to do this, but preached that Allah would offer protection - and punishment to those who offended the religion's most sacred institution. 'You never see Muslim people in Hong Kong protest, because it is not their way. You see people in other parts of the world involved in violence, burning flags and things, but you will never see this in Hong Kong,' Ms Ma said. Ibrahim Yeung, secretary of the Chinese Muslim Cultural and Fraternal Association, said Chinese Muslims were different and reflected the fact that Hong Kong was different from many other parts of the world in that they enjoyed their low profile. 'Chinese Muslims are more sensible and peaceful, because this is the atmosphere of Hong Kong,' said Mr Yeung, whose family came from the mainland. 'This is not a place where there has been religious conflicts, because it's more peaceful than other places.' Mr Yeung said there were still many in the community who had not seen the cartoons because Hong Kong's media had not reprinted them. 'People are angry about this gross insult to the Prophet. But they keep quiet,' he said. 'Protesting on the streets isn't the way in Hong Kong. We keep a low profile. The government doesn't like protests.' He said the success of the Muslim community here played an important role in its actions. 'Many Muslims are successful in business. Their business is very important and they concentrate on business rather than ... things happening elsewhere.' But Khan Muhammad Malik, vice-chairman of the Islamic Federation of Hong Kong, said the matter was too much of a slap in the face for followers of Islam to remain quiet. 'We have no option but to take action. You can ask followers of other religions how they would feel if what they held most sacred to them was mocked in this way,' he said. 'I have been crying about this. Why can't people respect our religion? Why can't they see what this means? We love the Prophet more than family, more than money, even more than life.' Imam Arshad said Friday's demonstration, for which government approval has already been sought, will allow all Hong Kong Muslims to show their anger in the heart of the city in a peaceful manner. A behind-the-scenes campaign will continue, which has seen numerous letters written to various consulates. Imam Arshad has been busy talking to people about how they should react. 'We are totally against the violence that has broken out in other countries. There is a different feeling in Hong Kong, different media sensibilities,' he said. 'This issue is a religious issue, an attack on Islam. Our support and voices must be heard.' Abdulool-Shakoor Ramjahn, spokesman for the Islamic Union of Hong Kong, which is controlled by the Trustees of the Islamic Community Fund of Hong Kong, said their organisation was the oldest and most powerful in Hong Kong, yet it had not been contacted about the protests. 'We have not been informed and we should have been,' he said. 'We will not comment on whether or not we support this action until we have been contacted and we are sure that it is genuine.' The trustees are responsible for all the mosques and Muslim cemeteries in Hong Kong on government land, and is the only organisation sanctioned by the government. It released a statement this week, as most other groups have done, trying to explain why the cartoons were considered offensive. 'With so many diverse religions and cultures, to incite hate, intolerance and disrespect serves no purpose in fostering a better world for all,' the statement read. 'The few that do this need to be cautioned of their actions, as do those that feel that violence demonstrates the conviction of their faith.' It seems the anger throughout the Muslim world is unlikely to subside in the next week. Whether Hong Kong's own community can find a way to unite their feelings into a common voice remains to be seen.