Monday, September 18, 2006

Pope sparks fury among Muslims

POPE Benedict was condemned by Islamic leaders across the world yesterday for remarks they said encouraged the belief that early Muslims spread their religion by violence.

Some said the Pontiff was trying to revive the spirit of the Crusades in a speech he gave during his tour of Germany on Tuesday, when he quoted a conversation between the 14th-century Byzantine Christian Emperor Manuel Paleologos II and an educated Persian on the truths of Christianity and Islam.

“The emperor comes to speak about the issue of jihad, holy war,” the Pope said.

“He said, I quote, ‘Show me just what Muhammad brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached’.”
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