UK diplomat's Fadlallah eulogy removed

British remove Beirut ambassador's blog praising Shi'ite cleric.

July 9, 2010 22:23
1 minute read.
Fadlallah in coffin

Fadlallah in coffin 311. (photo credit: AP)


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 The British government removed a blog post by its ambassador to Lebanon praising recently deceased Grand Ayatollah Mohammed Hussein Fadlallah on Friday, Reuters reported.

Ambassador Frances Guy had expressed her sadness at the death of the early Hizbullah spiritual mentor in a blog post titled "The passing of decent men."

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"When you visited him you could be sure of a real debate, a respectful argument and you knew you would leave his presence feeling a better person," Guy wrote.

Fadlallah was a Shi'ite cleric who was a known supporter of the Islamic Revolution in Iran and suicide bombings against Israel.

A British Foreign Office spokesman told Reuters that Guy's blog had been removed "after mature consideration."

A spokesman at the British Embassy in Tel Aviv had said earlier that the views in Guy’s blog were hers alone. He said that the Foreign Office had released a statement saying that Fadlallah’s “progressive social views” had sparked vigorous debate in the Shi’ite community, and “we very much welcomed the discussion we had with him concerning the position of Muslims in Europe.”

The spokesman said Britain had had profound disagreements with him, “especially over his statements advocating attacks on Israel," but could agree with him when he opposed the call to jihad by al- Qaida’s leader Osama bin Laden.

Herb Keinon contributed to this report.

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