Sydney sheik Youssef Hassan downplays Jewish hate claim

A Sydney sheik who told a group of children that the Jewish people have only envy and hatred in their hearts says he was referring to a particular group of Jews mentioned in the Koran, and not to the Jewish people more broadly.

Sheik Youssef Hassan also said he was joking when he forbade the children from celebrating Hallo­ween. He made the comments during a regular Friday lecture with children and their parents at the Quakers Hill Mosque in Sydney’s northwest late last month.

A video of the lecture remained on the mosque’s YouTube channel late yesterday.

Discussing the second chapter of the Koran, known as Surat ­Al-Baqarah or “The Cow”, Sheik ­Hassan told the children: “Allah mentioned this heart of the Jewish … the Israelites — the Jewish — their hearts become very hard, and Allah said that they become like a stone, but actually harder than a stone.

Read the report by Rachel Blaxendale in The Australian.

Watch video of Sheik Hassan recorded by MEMRI.