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Friday, October 24, 2014

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Baird condemns Egyptian president’s comments

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Foreign Minister John Baird

Foreign Minister John Baird has condemned the president of Egypt for calling Zionists “bloodsuckers” and comparing them to “the descendants of apes and pigs” in remarks made in 2010 as a leader of the Muslim Brotherhood.

In an interview on CBC’s News and Politics, Baird said, “I think whenever you hear anything resembling that type of antisemitic rant, it causes us all deep concern. Those remarks were absolutely abhorrent, and obviously the government of Canada condemns any such remarks.”

In Washington, White House press secretary Jay Carney also condemned Mohamed Morsi’s remarks, made in 2010 but revealed only last week by MEMRI, the Middle East Media Research Institute.

“The language that we have seen is deeply offensive. We completely reject these statements, as we do any language that espouses religious hatred,” Carney said.

“This kind of discourse has been acceptable in the region for far too long, and it’s counter to the goal of peace. President Morsi should make clear that he respects people of all faiths, and that this type of rhetoric is not acceptable or productive in a democratic Egypt, he added.

“Since taking office, President Morsi has reaffirmed Egypt’s commitment to its peace treaty with Israel in both word and deed, and has proven willing to work with us towards shared objectives including a ceasefire during the crisis in Gaza last year. These commitments are essential to our bilateral relations with Egypt as well as for stability in the region.”

Morsi’s 2010 remarks also urged Egyptians “to nurse our children and grandchildren on hatred towards those Zionists and Jews, and all those who support them.”

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