A Texas imam is under fire for saying Muslims should kill Jews in a sermon. It’s a horrific message at any time of year but particularly during the holidays.

Arutz Sheva News of Israel reported:

Houston imam calls for Muslims to kill Jews

A Houston imam walked back a sermon in which he called for Muslims to kill Jews without specifically apologizing for his comments.

Imam Raed Saleh Al-Rousan of Houston’s Tajweed Institute earlier this month delivered what he called an “impassioned sermon,” according to a statement about the speech issued on Wednesday.

“I unequivocally affirm and uphold the dignity, sanctity and value of all human life, including – of course – people of the Jewish faith,” Al-Rousan said in the statement. “I must also state in no uncertain terms that I am absolutely and completely opposed to and disgusted by all forms of terrorism, all terrorists, and I oppose anyone who would commit, call for, or threaten violence against civilians. This is why as a person of faith and a religious leader, that I am mortified that an impassioned sermon I gave in light of President Trump’s Jerusalem declaration is being seen as a call for the very things I despise.”

Al-Rousan had delivered his inflammatory speech on Dec. 8, two days after President Donald Trump announced the United States’ recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

“Judgment Day will not come until the Muslims fight the Jews. The Muslims will kill the Jews,” Al-Rousan said.

The imam also asserted in his speech that Jews “killed the Prophets and the Messengers of Allah.” He accused Britain of bringing Jews to Palestine, adding “So do not tell me that Palestine is the country of the Jewish people. No!”

You can see a video in the tweet below:

This story has gone largely unnoticed in American media but it was reported by Mihir Zaveri of the Houston Chronicle:

In wake of criticism, Houston imam says sermon wasn’t meant to incite violence

A sermon delivered this month by a Houston imam that included references to killing Jews has been condemned by the Anti-Defamation League and local Muslim leaders, prompting the imam to say he doesn’t support violence.

In a Dec. 8 sermon, Imam Raed Al-Rousan’s detailed his interpretation of the history of Israel and Palestine, stating that Palestine is not the country of Jewish people and that one day Muslims will fight and defeat Jews there…

On Wednesday, the Israeli Consul General for six states, including Texas, decried the speech as racist and hateful. He said it was particularly shameful in a diverse city like Houston.

“We should not be tolerant towards hatred,” said Gilad Katz, the consul general. “Hatred should be met with a very strong fist of the law, and should be dealt with seriously.”

The ADL said Wednesday that the imam’s statement indicates he “doesn’t fully understand the ramifications of his sermon.”

Dayan Gross, regional director for the ADL in Houston, wrote in an email that Al-Rousan should apologize to the Jewish community and “through future actions, demonstrate he is committed to understanding why the sermon was an incitement to violence.”

It’s a bit difficult to swallow “wasn’t meant to incite violence” when he specifically called for killing.

Featured image source.