Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

BUSINESS DAILY

Carney: UK suffering from 'economic post-traumatic stress'

Read more

ACROSS AFRICA

Liberia UNMIL mission: Peacekeepers prepare to hand over to government

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Boris Backs Out After Brexit

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

DRC elections: Kabila says poll will go ahead

Read more

THE DEBATE

Chaos at Westminster: UK's post-brexit leadership battle (part 1)

Read more

THE DEBATE

Chaos at Westminster: UK's post-brexit leadership battle (part 2)

Read more

ENCORE!

Matthew McConaughey and ‘Free State of Jones' shine new light on American civil war

Read more

FOCUS

Zika virus spreading fast across Puerto Rico

Read more

FRENCH CONNECTIONS

Take a break: France’s love affair with vacations

Read more

Asia-pacific

Ahmadinejad's Holocaust denial sparks outrage

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2009-09-19

The US, Britain, France and Germany have condemned Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's latest comments denying the Holocaust. Iran's president earlier said the Nazi genocide of Jews was a "mythical claim" and a pretext to establish the State of Israel.

AFP - Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said the Holocaust was a "myth" as he addressed the annual Quds Day rally in Tehran on Friday, reiterating comments that sparked outrage around the world.

The United States, Britain, France and Germany all issued statements slamming his latest outburst.

"The very existence of this regime is an insult to the dignity of the people," the hardline Ahmadinejad said of Iran's arch-foe Israel.

"They (Western powers) launched the myth of the Holocaust. They lied, they put on a show and then they support the Jews.

"If as you claim the Holocaust is true, why can a study not be allowed?" he said to chants of "Death to Israel" from the crowd gathered for the annual display of solidarity with the Palestinians.

"The pretext for establishing the Zionist regime is a lie... a lie which relies on an unreliable claim, a mythical claim, and the occupation of Palestine has nothing to do with the Holocaust," he added.

"This claim is corrupt and the pretext is corrupt. This (the Israeli) regime's days are numbered and it is on its way to collapse. This regime is dying."

Washington condemned Ahmadinejad's comments as ignorant and hateful.

"Regardless that we've heard that type of rhetoric before, obviously we condemn what he said, and I would point to what the president (Barack Obama) said in Cairo: denying the Holocaust is baseless, ignorant and hateful," White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said.

"Promoting those vicious lies serves only to isolate Iran further from the world."

British Foreign Secretary David Miliband branded Ahmadinejad's comments "abhorrent as well as ignorant," and said they were "not worthy of the leader of Iran."

"The coincidence of today's comments with the start of Jewish New Year only adds to the insult," he added.

French foreign ministry spokesman Bernard Valero called the Iranian president's remarks "unacceptable and shocking. We resolutely condemn them."

In Berlin German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said Ahmadinejad's remarks shamed Iran. "With his intolerable tirades, he shames his country," and his "anti-semitism... must be collectively condemned," he said.

Similar comments by Ahmadinejad shortly after his first election as president in 2005 also sparked an international outcry.

Then he said Israel was "doomed to be wiped off the map."

Date created : 2009-09-19

COMMENT(S)