The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), which monitors media coverage, particularly about Israel, translated Shahin as calling for God to “liberate the Al Aqsa Mosque from the filth of the Jews” and to “annihilate them down to the very last one,” the group said in a statement.
On Wednesday, Shahin told The Washington Post that he wasn’t speaking of Jews in general but “specifically about this group shutting down the mosque — these soldiers, or settlers, or fighters, or oppressors.” He said he focused on the situation at al-Aqsa because so many U.S. Muslims aren’t aware of it. He said he regularly speaks out against the Islamic State and extremism by Muslims and has made statements against Muslim extremist attacks in Europe, South Asia and elsewhere.
“It’s unfair when I have spoken about nonviolence, and here is some two minutes. My record is very clear, I have always been against violence,” he said.