Hong Kong International School has been forced to apologise to the city's Muslim community after it distributed hundreds of yearbooks carrying the controversial cartoon of the Prophet Mohammed that sparked worldwide anger earlier this year. The cartoon - entered in the yearbook as part of a news review of the year - shows the Prophet wearing a bomb as a headdress. Students from the middle and high schools were given copies last week. One teacher who declined to be named said: 'Several teachers sent e-mails to the head of the school after the middle- and high-school students and staff got the yearbook. 'It was a very bad slip. Our school's mission statement tells people to respect everybody's faith. 'This goes against everything we believe.' The teacher added that the annual had been compiled by students under the supervision of school staff. The school has held off on distributing the remainder of the yearbooks to its primary students. 'There was nothing malicious about it. The students were not insensitive. They just had a lack of understanding. They did not recognise the significance of putting the cartoon in,' said school head Richard Mueller. 'The process of putting the book together was hectic, and it was just overlooked. HKIS apologises to its constituents, the wider community, and especially to those of the Islamic faith.' Mr Mueller said the students who downloaded the image from the internet now realised 'it was not something they or the school wanted to do'. He was unable to give the number of yearbooks printed, but said there were enough for the students, staff and corporate sponsors. 'We have taken four pages out of the remaining yearbooks and will reprint them,' he said. 'We are reaching out to the Islamic community to tell them what happened. We are upset and embarrassed, but will learn from it. Let's not obsess on one picture.' Upon learning of the mistake, some sections of the local Islamic community have requested that the school provide copies of the book. 'We want them to send us a copy and explain what caused this. We need to look into this issue,' said Jamilah Amin, of the United Muslim Association of Hong Kong Last night, Muhammad Arshad, chief imam of the Kowloon Mosque and Islamic Centre, met school staff and said it was time to 'build bridges'. 'These images cause division and that is the last thing we want,' he said. 'There are some people who may react unreasonably to them, but I will be visiting the school on Tuesday to foster understanding. 'We realise this was a genuine mistake.'