The Palestinian terror group Hamas joined voices for calm in the international furor sparked by cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad, as a Taliban commander in Afghanistan said 100 suicide bombers were lined up on the side of further violence.
Hamas "is prepared to play a role in calming the situation between the Islamic world and Western countries on condition that these countries commit themselves to putting an end to attacks against the feelings of Muslims," the organization's leader Khaled Mashaal told a news conference.
His conciliatory tone came a day after he warned the Western press was "playing with fire" by publishing the cartoons which have led to riots around the world.
Hamas invited to Moscow
Earlier Thursday, Mashaal said Hamas would accept an invitation by Russian President Vladimir Putin to visit Moscow.
Mashaal said "we salute the courageous Russian position and the declarations of President Putin ... in which he did not consider Hamas to be a terrorist organization.
That stance would "lead to a certain balance" in international relations, given that "American influence has begun to weaken as a result of impasses in which the American administration finds itself," he added.
Mashaal added that a Hamas delegation would also be traveling soon to "a number of Latin American countries who support the Palestinian question and who are fed up with American policy in the world."