ADL blasts US churches' praise of Ahmadinejad

The New York-based Anti Defamation League has blasted a delegation of American church leaders for praising Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad following a recent meeting in Teheran, calling the move a "shameful betrayal" of Christian-Jewish relations. "By meeting with Ahmadinejad, these American Christian leaders are collaborating with a dangerous despot who calls for the destruction of Israel and denies the six million Jewish victims of the Holocaust," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. Leaders of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA had lauded Ahmadinejad as a pious and witty man. "Ahmadinejad comes across as a very religious man," said the Rev. Dr. Shanta Premawardhana, NCC's Associate General Secretary for Interfaith Relations. The NCC delegation to the Islamic Republic included leaders from Mennonite, Quakers, United Methodist, Baptist, Episcopal, and Catholic churches.