Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird released a statement last week condemning Iran for anti-Semitic remarks made at a United Nations conference on drugs.
Baird stated that Iran’s Vice-President Mohammad Reza Rahimi made “abusive and deeply offensive slurs toward the Jewish people,” according to a Foreign Affairs Department media release.
“Rahimi was cited by Iranian media and on President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s website as saying at the June 26 anti-drugs meeting in Tehran that ‘the spread of narcotics in the world emanates from the teachings of the Talmud … whose objective is the destruction of the world,’ according to an Associated Press report.
“Mr. Rahimi is quoted to have said that the Talmud is responsible for the spread of illegal drugs around the world; this claim is patently absurd,” the release stated. The Talmud is the Jewish book of laws.
The US State Department and the UN Office for Drugs and Crime also expressed dismay at Rahimi’s comments. Baird issued the statement from New York, where he was addressing a UN conference on countering terrorism.