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Tuesday 21 October  
British-Palestinian Muslim cleric Haitham al-Haddad
Michel Hoebink's picture
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Amsterdam, Netherlands
Amsterdam, Netherlands

Cleric did say “Jews are descendants of apes and pigs”

Published on : 17 February 2012 - 8:30pm | By Michel Hoebink (photo: ANP)
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“I will tell you the truth about the fight between us and Jews who are the enemies of God and the descendants of apes and pigs.” That is the correct translation of a statement the controversial British-Palestinian Muslim cleric Haitham al-Haddad made in 2001, Arabic-speaking journalists at Radio Netherlands Worldwide confirm.

The cleric, who is to participate in a public debate in Amsterdam on Friday evening, has repeatedly denied making the statement, which appeared in a sermon posted on the Islamic website al-Minbar.

There is some scope for interpretation, admits RNW’s Chaalan Charif. “Strikingly, the cleric omits the definite article “the” before “Jews”. In Arabic this could be taken to mean he is not speaking about Jews in general but only about those Jews who are enemies of God and descendants of apes and pigs.”

Protests
Translated into English the anti-Semitic statement caused a storm of protest in the Dutch parliament when it was announced the cleric had been invited to give a lecture at Amsterdam’s VU University. In response, the cleric disowned the statement in interviews with several Dutch media, including RNW. “Those are definitely not my words,” he declared, saying that “words attributed to him” had been wrongly translated.

Amsterdam’s VU University has since cancelled the cleric’s lecture, which he will now deliver at Amsterdam's multicultural debating venue De Balie.

Calling Jews “descendants of apes and pigs” is not uncommon in Islamist rhetoric directed against Israel. The image derives from several Qur'anic verses such as the following one: “The example of those who were entrusted with the Torah and then did not take it on is like that of a donkey who carries volumes of books.” (62:5)

However, as Islam expert Michiel Leezenberg of the University of Amsterdam emphasises, there is one important difference: “These Qur'anic verses do not say Jews are apes or pigs or their descendants. The Qur'an makes a comparison, which is not the same as a statement.”

(cl/imm)

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

Discussion

D Johnson 19 August 2012 - 8:53pm / U.S.A

Why would anyone move to a country who's custom's he does not respect?
I think he should be sent back to where ever he came from.
It is his kind that make things difficult for ture refugees.

Anonymous 30 June 2012 - 7:13pm

apes/monkeys = قردة
pigs = خنازير
no possibility to mistranslate. He can save up his lies.

Anonymous 20 May 2012 - 4:21pm / Australia

The only ape was the one i saw in the picture .That inbred Muslim.

Anonymous 1 April 2012 - 3:48pm / The Netherlands

You must not ban this man. It is important to hear what he said and means. I am afraid that our respect for 'multiculturalism' allows people to say things like that which exposes the true hate filled adgenda of this 'faith'.
If I wrote such things about Muslims I would be in court pretty quickly. No, we do not want two standards of free speach and if that is what he said and means we need to be told!

Deedub 21 February 2012 - 4:58am / USA

What is the source of the remark? I can't find it mentioned anywhere. A speech? If so, Capable RNW Technicians, please post a video link with transcript so we can judge. In the meantime, how about some interviews with Dutch Muslim leaders? I would like them to state clearly and for the public record whether or not they think al-Haddad is expressing their religion correctly (both by his insults and his lies). Some are quick to condemn Ayaan Hirsi Ali. Will they be as straightforward with al-Haddan?

Kali Politeis 19 February 2012 - 9:15pm

Look, it's really simple - get him out of your country, don't let him back in, or arrest and try him for hate speech.

Why was Geert Wilders on trial, but not this vicious and ugly idiot?

Have the Dutch lost their minds?

Kali Politeis 19 February 2012 - 9:15pm

Look, it's really simple - get him out of your country, don't let him back in, or arrest and try him for hate speech.

Why was Geert Wilders on trial, but not this vicious and ugly idiot?

Have the Dutch lost their minds?

Frederik 19 February 2012 - 5:27pm / The Netherlands

I wonder why religious people are so selective in their quotes from their holy scriptures.

"If anyone harms (others), God will harm him, and if anyone shows hostility to others, God will show hostility to him." Sunan of Abu-Dawood, Hadith 1625.

"Those who believe (in the Qur'an), and those who follow the Jewish (scriptures), and the Christians...and (all) who believe in God and the last day and work righteousness, shall have their reward with their Lord; on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve." The Qur'an, 2:62

Anonymous 20 February 2012 - 8:46am

The verses of the Koran that concern me are those the violent Muslims repeat as justification for their actions. The verse that you select could be one of the abrogated verses, those verses nullified by Allah, therefore not in force, - repudiated by Allah.

anonymous 19 February 2012 - 12:57am / Audstralia

The Apes and Pigs are usefull animals. So from what 'primitive thing' did the Arabs come from??

Anonymous 19 February 2012 - 5:02am

You mis-spelled Australia. So where are you really from?

G. Zellig 20 February 2012 - 8:08am

Perhaps the commenter is from a Australia AND is a foreign currency trader (AUD = Australian Dollar) ....

anonymous 19 February 2012 - 12:57am / Audstralia

The Apes and Pigs are usefull animals. So from what 'primitive thing' did the Arabs come from??

Anonymous 18 February 2012 - 6:18pm

Yes, a descendant of Abraham.

Anonymous 18 February 2012 - 3:58pm

Islam is misery on parade.
What will it take for all migration of Muslims into Western countries to cease?
Their anti-Semitic under-current is a widespread poison that changing the social fabric of Western cities, towns and suburbs.

Anonymous 7 July 2012 - 12:53am

Your comment is not any less racist than this man's. I wonder if you will be able to figure it out. I'm thinking probably not.

Anonymous 18 February 2012 - 8:54am / netherlands

its amazing to see one person can say a lot of nasty things and when being confronted he can reply with "i didnt say that". amazing to see he uses his freedom of speech to limit freedom of speech for women. its amazing how this person is obsessed with his religion and spreads the words non-moslims must be punished or dont deserve respect, how women have no rights and how he uses freedom of a country he likes to limit with Sharia law and yet claim the religion is all about freedom, peace, love and care. till now i only hear depression, submission, limitation and death. feel the love.

Anonymous 17 February 2012 - 11:43pm

This cleric should be invited to go to Guantanamo;he might get a one-way trip for free.

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