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US urges Mursi to retract anti-Semitic remarks

Published on Jan 16, 2013 6:05 AM
Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi is seen during his meeting and Qatari Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Hamad bin Jassim Al-Thani in Cairo on January 8, 2013. -- PHOTO: AFP

WASHINGTON (AFP) - The United States on Tuesday condemned vitriolic anti-Semitic remarks attributed to Egypt's Islamist President Mohamed Mursi before he was elected, and urged him to clarify his views.

"The language that we've seen is deeply offensive," State Department spokesman Victoria Nuland said, adding "we think that these comments should be repudiated, and they should be repudiated firmly."

According to a TV clip released by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), Mr Mursi refers in a 2010 interview to "occupiers of Palestine" as "blood suckers and war mongers, and descendants of pigs and apes."

"We must resist them with all forms of resistance. A military resistance in Palestine against these Zionist criminals assaulting the land of Palestine and Palestinians," he says in the remarks to Quds Channel three years ago.

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