Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein on Tuesday asked Israel Police to launch an investigation against the top Muslim cleric of Jerusalem and the Palestinian Authority over comments he made during a recent rally in Ramallah.
Deputy Attorney General Shai Nitzan sent Israel Police a letter asking that it launch a criminal investigation against Grand Mufti Mohammed Hussein on suspicion of incitement to violence and racism.
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During an event celebrating the 47th anniversary of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah movement last week, Mufti Mohammed Hussein cited a hadith (saying attributed to the Prophet Muhammad) claiming that the Earth's end of days will not happen until Muslims kill Jews in a religious battle: "The Hour (of Resurrection) will not come until you fight the Jews. The Jew will hide behind stones or trees. Then the stones or trees will call: 'Oh Muslim, servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him.'"
The moderator who introduced the mufti at the Fatah event said, "Our war with the descendants of the apes and pigs (i.e., Jews) is a war of religion and faith."
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu condemned the mufti's comments, which were posted on YouTube by an Israeli watchdog group, as "heinous." He called for an investigation against the Muslim cleric.
The mufti said the accusations were part of what he called Israel's incitement campaign against senior officials in east Jerusalem.
Ahmad Rwaidy, an advisor on Jerusalem affairs in Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' office, told the Ramallah-based The Voice of Palestine radio station that Netanyahu's call for an investigation against Sheikh Hussein constitutes an attack on the Palestinian nation's religious and national symbols.
Roi Kais contributed to the report
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