Masagos rebuts those who blame French

Environment and Water Resources Minister Masagos Zulkifli (photo) has responded to those who blame the French for the terror attacks in Paris.

In a Facebook post yesterday, he said he was saddened some had construed the assault as "a consequence of the misdeeds of the West that have caused the eternal misery of the Palestinians and the war victims of Iraq and Syria" and "inferred the French had it coming".

Such words, he said, fell "just short of justifying the cruel and cowardly acts of the terrorists".

"They only seek to incite anger and justify revenge."

In not condemning acts that are themselves anti-Islam, Mr Masagos said, Muslims confuse "what it means to be the witness of the religion of peace against becoming a people who must pay every misdeed with killings and damage".

He also cited comments by Islamic scholar Faraz Rabbani that he found comforting and apt: "When we see ugliness, we should have a renewed sense of urgency to uphold the good ourselves, to become embodiments of the good, to become ambassadors of the good."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 16, 2015, with the headline 'Masagos rebuts those who blame French'. Print Edition | Subscribe