The United States has called on Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi to repudiate offensive anti-Semitic remarks he made before he was elected.
According to a television clip released last week by the Middle East Media Research Institute, in 2010 Mr. Morsi referred to Israeli people as “occupiers of Palestine” and as “bloodsuckers and war mongers, and descendants of pigs and apes.” He made other disparaging remarks and called on Egyptians to teach their children to hate Jews.
A spokeswoman for the U.S. State Department, Victoria Nuland, told reporters Tuesday that Washington condemns the comments made by President Morsi.
“The language that we've seen is deeply offensive. We completely reject these statements as we do any language that espouses religious hatred.”
Nuland said the United States wants President Morsi to make absolutely clear to his people and to the international community that he respects people of all faiths. She stressed that this kind of rhetoric is unacceptable in a democratic Egypt.
Mr. Morsi, a former leader of the ruling Muslim Brotherhood, came to power last year as Egypt's first democratically elected president. But Nuland said that since taking office in June, he has reaffirmed his commitment to Egypt's peace treaty with Israel.