Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said the Holocaust was no ‘myth’ and clarified that a statement on the website of Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei suggesting otherwise was just ‘bad translation.’
During an exclusive interview on Sunday, George Stephanopoulos of ABC ‘This Week’ asked Zarif about his views on Khamenei’s official English-language website that called the massacre of Jews at the hands of Nazis a ‘myth.’
Following is the English interpretation of the Supreme Leader’s address to Iranian Air Force Servicemen in 2006 that Stephanopoulos referred to in his interview:
“Western countries allow no freedom of expression, which they claim to advocate, with regard to the myth of the massacre of Jews known as the holocaust, and nobody in the West enjoys the freedom of expression to deny it or raise doubts about it.”
Zarif said he had spoken to the Ayatollah on the Holocaust and he rejected and condemned the killing of innocent people whether it was in Nazi Germany or Palestine.
The Iranian Foreign Minister also explained that the statement on Khamenei’s website was simply a mistranslation.
“This is the problem when you translate something from Persian to English," he said. "You may lose some of the meaning.”
You can watch his complete interview in the video above.
The denial of the Holocaust has been a bone of contention between Iran and the West for a very long time. Former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad was widely known (or rather notorious) for his denial of the Holocaust. His successor Hassan Rouhani, however, has been trying to imply the exact opposite.
In a conversation with CNN’s Christine Amanpour, Rouhani called the crime that the Nazis committed towards the Jews a ‘reprehensible and condemnable’ act.