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Iran calls for all-out fight against Islamophobia in West amid NZ attack

President Hassan Rouhani says the Friday massacre of Muslim people in New Zealand once again highlighted the need for an all-out international fight against Islamophobia fueled by certain Western governments.

In a Friday message, the Iranian president condemned the “terrorist and racist” attack on Muslim worshippers, and described the massacre as a “barbaric and painful” incident which broke the hearts of all Muslim people in the world, especially the Iranian nation.

At least one gunman killed 49 people and wounded more than 40 during Friday prayers at two New Zealand mosques in the country’s worst ever mass shooting, which Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern condemned as terrorism.

“This barbaric crime, which resulted in the martyrdom and injury of a number of innocent and defenseless worshippers, is another proof of the need for an all-out fight against terrorism and hate-mongering toward other religions and ethnic groups, and the Islamophobia which is common in the West, and unfortunately fueled by certain Western governments,” Rouhani said in his message.

“This crime indicated that terrorism is still among the important issues of the world, and needs an integrated fight and a united approach by all countries against violence and extremism in any part of the world,” he noted.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran is still committed to decisive fight against terrorism and racism, and is sure that, thanks to the unity and solidarity of Muslim people, such blind and aimless plots by the enemies would result in nothing but further disgrace for them,” he added.

Rouhani also called on the international community, particularly Muslim states, to show serious reaction to these anti-human crimes, and “disgrace the overt and covert sponsors of such moves.”

In a Friday tweet, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif also cited Trump’s Islamophobic remarks, and said the New Zealand attack was a result of “Western hypocrisy of defending demonization of Muslims as ‘freedom of expression’.”

“Impunity in Western ‘democracies’ to promote bigotry leads to this: Israeli thugs enter mosque in Palestine to insult Muslims; terrorists in NZ livestream their murder of 49 Muslims. Western hypocrisy of defending demonization of Muslims as ‘freedom of expression’ MUST end,” he said.

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