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Mahmoud Ahmadinejad dropped 'ambiguous' Holocaust reference from UN speech | World news | guardian.co.uk

Iran's president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, dropped a controversial phrase casting doubt on the Holocaust from an address to a United Nations conference on racism, according to UN officials and Farsi interpreters.

An official Iranian text of Ahmadinejad's address to the conference on Monday referred to "the ambiguous and dubious question of the Holocaust". However, when the president delivered the speech he omitted the phrase, referring more vaguely to "abuse of the Holocaust". He also dropped a segment about Zionist "penetration" of western society.

It is not clear why he deviated from the prepared text, but Ahmadinejad took the podium at the conference following a meeting with the UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, who had urged against the use of divisive language.

However, the speech as delivered still contained the claim that Israel had been created by western "military aggression" after the second world war, "by using the pretext of Jewish sufferings and by abusing the Holocaust". He described Israel as "a completely racist regime" and "those racist perpetrators of genocide". He also suggested the 2003 Iraq invasion was planned "by the Zionists and their allies in the then US administration in complicity with the arms manufacturing companies and the owners of wealth".

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Tue Apr 21st, 2009 at 12:37:02 PM EST
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