Iran’s supreme leader penned an online letter to Western youth asking them to not judge Islam by the actions of the jihadist terrorists who killed 17 people in Paris. While Twitter and major websites are blocked in his country, Ayatollah Khamenei tweeted parts his letter under the hashtag #Letter4U on Wednesday to the western world.
— Khamenei.ir (@khamenei_ir) January 21, 2015
“I don’t insist that you accept my reading or any other reading of Islam. What I want to say is: Don’t allow this dynamic and effective reality in today’s world to be introduced to you through resentments and prejudices,” he wrote in a post entitled “To the Youth in Europe and North America.”
Khamenei goes on to say how the recent events in Paris have been used to shine a negative light on Islam. He asked Western youth to gain a "proper, correct and unbiased understanding of Islam" urging them to “receive knowledge of Islam from its primary and original source.”
Iran condemned the shooting at the Charlie Hebdo Offices on Jan. 7 but called the publication’s new cartoon of the Prophet Muhammad “provocative.”
“We believe that sanctities need to be respected,” Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Zarif said at a news conference in Geneva about the new Charlie Hebdo cover on Jan. 14. “We won’t be able to engage in a serious dialogue if we start disrespecting each other’s values.”