Muslim religious leaders have accused Pope Benedict XVI of quoting anti-Islamic remarks during a speech at a German university this week.
Questioning the concept of holy war, he quoted a 14th-Century Christian emperor who said Muhammad had brought the world only "evil and inhuman" things.
A senior Pakistani Islamic scholar, Javed Ahmed Gamdi, said jihad was not about spreading Islam with the sword.
Turkey's top religious official asked for an apology for the "hostile" words.
In Indian-administered Kashmir, police seized copies of newspapers which reported the Pope's comments to prevent any tension.
A Vatican spokesman, Father Frederico Lombardi, said he did not believe the Pope's comments were meant as a harsh criticism of Islam....
read full story here----------
Turkey's ruling Islamic-rooted party joined a wave of criticism of Pope Benedict XVI on Friday, accusing him of trying to revive the spirit of the Crusades with remarks he made about the Muslim faith. A Turkish lawmaker said the pontiff would go down in history "in the same category as leaders such as Hitler and Mussolini" for his words.
Muslim leaders elsewhere in the world also expressed dismay, with Pakistan's parliament unanimously condemning the pope.
The Vatican said the pope did not intend the remarks - made in Germany on Tuesday during an address at a university - to be offensive....
read full story here----------
The furore over comments made by Pope Benedict about the Islamic concept of Holy War continues to grow. Today British Muslims joined in, fiercely criticising his remarks.
The pontiff was accused of falling into "the trap of bigots and racists" with the comments he made on a visit to Germany....
read full story here
THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: So they're angry at him for calling it like it is? Did they forget the pope also criticized Secularism in the same speech? Islam has a problem folks. I don't care what Muslims say to try to gloss it over. The Koran condones the killing of "infidels" -- that is non-Muslims -- and this is compounded by the fact that Islam has no central structure of authority to quell radical interpretations. As of late, radicals have been slowly taking over the religion while moderates are either unwilling, or unable, to do anything to stop it. The pope is simply calling a spade a spade, and I applaud him for coming out on the issue so clearly. He appealed to all Muslims, both moderate and radical alike, to reject violence in the name of religion. Now what's so bad about that? What is so horrible about demanding that a religion which calls itself "peaceful," actively work toward promoting peace? Sure, he quoted a medieval critic of Islam, and Islam needs to be criticized, but it's nothing in comparison to the criticism Islam offers to Christianity every day via the Koran and its clerics. If ever a religion should recognize its need for criticism, it is Islam, right here and right now at this juncture in history. Instead, we get outrage. We get anger and demands for apology. Should we really be surprised though? Remember the riots we got over cartoon depictions of Mohammed a few months ago? I saw those cartoons. They were not that bad. I've seen cartoon depictions of Jesus Christ far worse than that. Christians endure constant ridicule by the secular media and Hollywood all of the time. You don't see Christians rioting in the streets. So what does this prove? It proves that more and more, with each passing year, it seems that Islam is either unable, or unwilling, to tolerate any criticism of itself, of any sort, any time or anywhere. With each passing year, Muslims (moderate and radical alike) are viewing Islam with absolute incorruptibility, above reproach, without error, and completely beyond any criticism.
With such a view of Islam, is it any wonder that Muslims would react so viscerally toward anyone who would dare utter a word of criticism against the religion, or how it's practiced? This is the problem the pope is pointing out, but instead of pointing the finger of blame, he instead offers the hand of cooperation. He calls upon all Muslims to reject violence and join him in working for peace. But instead of taking him up on his offer, it seems that most Muslims would rather use rioting and demonstrations to bully the Vatican into an apology from the "infidel" pope who would dare speak a word against their "faultless" and "incorruptible" religion.
Of course, my question is this. What if the pope doesn't give them the apology they demand? What if the pope sticks to his words and holds his ground? Then what? What will the Muslim world do? Will there be riots in the streets? Will they issue a fatwa of jihad against Roman Catholics? Will they attempt to assassinate the pope himself? Who knows. But by the way Muslims have responded to criticism thus far, none of these possibilities seems unlikely. One thing remains certain though. If any harm comes to the pope, by a Muslim, because of these remarks, it will only solidify western opposition to Islam permanently. If I were a Muslim, I would be begging my fellow Muslims to put a sock in it, and I would be praying to Allah that nothing bad ever happens to this pope.