Police in Montreal, Canada, have issued an arrest warrant for a Palestinian-Jordanian imam accusing him of willful promotion of hatred, following speeches that demonize Jews and use the Quran to call for their destruction.
The warrant follows a probe by Montreal police’s hate crimes squad, after a complaint by B’nai Brith Canada about a December speech at the Dar al-Arkam mosque during which Muhammad bin Musa al Nasr described Jews as “the most evil of mankind” and as “human demons.”
The imam then quoted from the Quran, saying at “the end of time … the stone and the tree will say: ‘Oh Muslim, oh servant of Allah, there is a Jew behind me – come and kill him!’”
The mosque allowed the West Bank-born imam, a prominent member of the hard-line Salafist movement in Jordan, where he lectures at the al-Ahliyya University in Amman, to deliver more than a dozen other speeches as well.
Michael Mostyn, the CEO of B’nai Brith Canada, told the Montreal Gazette, “Today, the Jewish community of Montreal can sleep safer, knowing that there is a price to pay for inciting violence against our community.
“This incident and others like it demonstrate that anti-Semitism, especially in the guise of religion, remains a serious problem in Canada today.”
Bnai Brith has called for the extradition of the imam, whom it believes is in Jordan, although his precise whereabouts are not known.
While several Muslim groups have condemned the speech, the Dar al- Arkam mosque has not removed the original Arabic version from its YouTube channel, nor has it apologized, the Gazette said.
The complaint against Nasr was the second against a Montreal imam.
A video released in March by the Middle East Media Research Institute showed Sheikh Wael Al-Ghitawi in November 2014 delivering a sermon at the Al Andalous Islamic Center in the St. Laurent borough against the “people who slayed the prophets, shed their blood, and cursed the Lord …”
In February, a video from August 2014 released on YouTube showed a different imam from the mosque calling on Allah to “destroy the accursed Jews” and that they be killed “one by one.”
Montreal’s hate crimes unit is also reportedly looking to question a local rapper, Jonathan Azaziah (aka Madd Cold), who — according to B’nai Brith — uses his music to promote anti-Semitism.
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Among Azaziah’s songs is one called “Death to Israel,” and another titled “Overthrow the Saudis.”
“We are pleased that the Montreal Hate Crimes Unit is taking this matter very seriously,” said B’nai Brith’s Mostyn.
“Azaziah has not only proclaimed his desire to murder Jews but encourages others to do the same. This is perhaps the most clear-cut case of incitement to violence against the Jewish people in Canada that we have seen in a long time.”