India is facing a firestorm over ruling party officials' comments about Islam. Here's what you need to know

Nupur Sharma at Jam Nagar House in 2015 in New Delhi, India.

(CNN)India is trying to contain the diplomatic fallout as outrage grows in the Muslim world following derogatory comments made by ruling party officials about the Prophet Mohammed.

The United Arab Emirates, Malaysia, Oman, and Iraq are among at least 15 Muslim-majority nations to have condemned the remarks, which were described as "Islamophobic," with several countries summoning India's ambassadors.
The incident sparked protests in neighboring Pakistan and prompted calls from around the region to boycott Indian goods.
    India's Hindu nationalist ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) disciplined the two officials involved, but the firestorm involving India's major Arab trade partners is yet to die down.
      Here's what you need to know.

      What is causing the backlash?

      At the center of the controversy is Nupur Sharma, now suspended national spokesperson for the BJP -- the party of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
        On May 26, Sharma made comments during a televised debate on an Indian news channel about the Prophet Mohammed that were widely deemed offensive and Islamophobic.
        Most Indian news outlets have not directly quoted Sharma's original comments.
        Sharma later withdrew her remarks and said it was never her intention to "hurt anyone's religious feelings." On Twitter, Sharma said her words were a response to derogatory comments made during the debate about a Hindu god.
        "If my words have caused discomfort or hurt religious feelings of anyone whatsoever, I hereby unconditionally withdraw my statement," she said.
        Another BJP spokesperson, Naveen Jindal, who has since been expelled, had also made comments about the Prophet on social media.


        The BJP said on June 5 it had suspended Sharma and expelled Jindal from the party.
        "The Bharatiya Janata Party is also strongly against any ideology which insults or demeans any sect or religion. The BJP does not promote such people or philosophy," the party said in a statement on June 5 without directly referring to the comments from Sharma or Jindal.
        Police in the Indian capital Delhi have also registered cases against Sharma and several others accused of disrupting public tranquility and incitement, according to a tweet from the Delhi police's official Twitter account.
        A complaint was also earlier filed in Mumbai against Sharma for her inflammatory comments.
        On June 8, Indian police said they had arrested a former BJP local youth leader in the northern city of Kanpur for posting inflammatory content on social media about Prophet Mohammed.
        The incident has led to protests among the country's Muslim minority in several states. In Uttar Pradesh's Kanpur on Friday, at least 54 people were arrested in connection with the protests, senior Kanpur police official Pramod Kumar told CNN.

        Global reactions

        The BJP's move to suspend its spokesperson failed to stop the controversy escalating beyond India's borders.
        Qatar, Kuwait and Iran summoned India's ambassadors, and the Gulf Cooperation Council, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation issued statements of condemnation. Malaysia was the latest country to condemn the remarks. Its Ministry of Foreign Affairs summoned the High Commissioner of India to Malaysia on Tuesday to convey their "total repudiation over this incident."
        Protesters in the Pakistani city of Lahore called on Indian Prime Minister Modi to issue an apology. And some stores in Kuwait have removed Indian products from their shelves following similar calls for a boycott.
        The hashtag "Anyone but the Prophet, oh Modi" has been trending on Twitter in all six Gulf countries, and as far away as Algeria. Oman's outspoken Grand Mufti Sheikh Ahmad Al-Khalili, the chief religious figure in the country, called Sharma's comments "a war on all Muslims" and a matter that "calls for all Muslims to rise as one nation."
        Modi has not publicly commented on the incident but Indian embassies in Gulf nations have made statements saying the comments "do not, in any manner, reflect the views of the government of India" and