CAIRO: The head of the banned but tolerated Muslim Brotherhood on Thursday condemned what he described as the West s ferocious war against Islam.
We observe with open eyes and alert minds this ferocious attack against Islam and Muslims, Mohammed Mehdi Akef said in a statement issued for next week s Eid Al-Fitr feast.
He cited the caricatures of the prophet Mohammed which were published in a Danish newspaper a year ago and sparked outrage throughout the Muslim world and Pope Benedict XVI s speech in which he quoted a medieval Byzantine emperor who links Islam with violence.
The pope s speech displays blatant ignorance and deep hatred [of Islam], Akef said.
In September, the Muslim Brotherhood demanded an apology from the pope.
Akef also condemned other forms of persecution suffered by Muslim minorities in the West, especially after September 11, referring to the 2001 Al-Qaeda attacks on the United States.