Singapore’s Lee Denies WikiLeaks Report of Anti-Islam Slur

Posted September 5th, 2011 at 3:30 am (UTC-5)
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Singapore's former leader Lee Kuan Yew says there is no basis for a leaked U.S. diplomatic cable in which he is quoted describing Islam as a “venomous” religion.

The cable, released last week by the WikiLeaks website, says Mr. Lee made the remark in 2005 during a meeting with then-U.S. Senator Hillary Clinton.

But Mr. Lee said Monday he has checked with foreign ministry records of the meeting. He says the records show he did not say anything that could be construed as calling Islam a venomous religion.

Mr. Lee, who ruled Singapore through its first three decades of independence, says he did talk to Clinton about Islamic terrorists and the jihadist preachers who have brainwashed them.

He says he believes those preachers practice a perverted version of Islam.

The issue is a sensitive one in multi-racial Singapore, where about 15 percent of the population is Muslim.