Merkel takes Morsi to task over Jew comments


German Chancellor Angela Merkel used a meeting with Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi to criticize his past remarks on Jews.

During their meeting Wednesday, according to German media, Merkel raised the issue of recorded remarks Morsi made in 2010 in which he called Israeli Zionists “descendants of apes and pigs.” Morsi responded that the comments were taken out of context and said that, as a religious Muslim, he is “not against Judaism as a religion. I am not against the Jews who practice their faith,” according to the Austrian newspaper Der Standard. Morsi reportedly said he is against religious practices in which blood is spilled.

Merkel's criticism of Morsi's remarks drew praise from Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles, who was in Berlin to address a controversy over the center's Top 10 list of anti-Semitic statements of 2012 — which included the work of rominent German journalist Jakob Augstein.The list was topped by Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood.

Cooper said Thursday he hoped Merkel's confrontation of Morsi would “send a signal not only to Egyptians but to leaders in Europe who show up to commemorations to dead victims of the Holocaust but unfortunately are all too absent when it comes to standing up for the rights of Jews.”

Morsi called Jews ‘apes and pigs’ in 2010 video


In 2010, Mohamed Morsi, now Egypt's president, called Israelis “descendants of apes and pigs” and said peace talks with Zionists were a waste of time.

Morsi's statements were presented in a compilation prepared this week by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) and posted on the institute’s website. It shows parts of interviews Morsi gave that were disseminated or broadcast by Lebanon’s Al-Quds TV.

“Either [you accept] the Zionists and everything they want, or else it is war,” Morsi is seen saying on one video. “This is what these occupiers of the land of Palestine know – these blood-suckers, who attack the Palestinians, these warmongers, the descendants of apes and pigs.”

Last August, Morsi, who became president last June, told Reuters that Egypt would honor the international treaties it has signed, a statement construed as a pledge to preserve Egypt’s peace treaty with Israel.

In the 2010 interview, Morsi is seen saying that peace talks “are a waste of time and opportunities. The Zionists buy time and gain more opportunities, as the Palestinians, the Arabs, and the Muslims lose time and opportunities, and they get nothing out of it. We can see how this dream has dissipated. This dream has always been an illusion.”

He also said, “Resistance should be the practice of the Muslims and the Arabs outside Palestine. They should support the resistance fighters and besiege the Zionist wherever they are. None of the Arab or Muslim peoples and regimes should have dealings with them.”

In the televised interview, he said: “The Zionists have no right to the land of Palestine. There is no place for them on the land of Palestine. What they took before 1947-8 constitutes plundering.”

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