Two international human rights groups have denounced a leading Egyptian politician who denied the Holocaust and said the 9/11 terrorist attacks were manufactured in the U.S. during an interview with The Washington Times.
"We were stunned and outraged to learn of [Ahmed] Ezz El-Arab's ignorant and despicable comments made during his recent visit to Budapest," said Ambassador Istvan Gyarmati, founder of the International Center for Democratic Transition (ICDT), in a statement on behalf of his organization and the Tom Lantos Institute.
The rights groups last month organized the Conference on Democracy and Human Rights in Budapest, where Mr. Ezz Al-Arab, a vice chairman of Egypt's secular Wafd Party, had been a participant. He made his inflammatory remarks to The Times on the sidelines of the gathering.
"Such shameful statements not only discredit Mr. El-Arab, they profoundly undermine the credibility of the Wafd party which he claims to represent," Mr. Gyarmati said in a statement. "Both the ICDT and the TLI condemn his comments in the most unequivocal terms and call upon the legitimate leaders of the 'Arab Spring' to do so as well."
In the interview, Mr. Ezz El-Arab also called Anne Frank's memoir a "fake," called President Obama "the black rabbit taken out of the American hat when it was needed," and claimed that U.S. soldiers of "double Israeli nationality" had stolen Jewish antiquities from Iraq and had them reburied under Jerusalem's Temple Mount to fool archaeologists.
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