WASHINGTON - US President Barack Obama on Thursday urged countries to tackle violent Islamist militancy around the world and rejected as "an ugly lie" suggestions that the West was at war with Islam.
Obama said there was a complicated history between the Middle East and the West and no one should be immune from criticism over specific policies.
"But the notion that the West is at war with Islam is an ugly lie," he said. "And all of us, regardless of our faith, have a responsibility to reject it," he told an international conference in Washington on countering violent extremism.
"Muslim communities, including scholars and clerics, therefore have a responsibility to push back not just on twisted interpretations of Islam, but also on the lie that we are somehow engaged in a clash of civilizations," Obama said.