(CNSNews.com) – London Mayor Ken Livingstone’s previous support of a Muslim cleric who advocates suicide bombings may cause him some embarrassment as he now must speak for the city in the wake of Thursday’s terrorist bombings.
Livingstone condemned the Thursday attacks as “mass murder,” and added that “this was not a terrorist attack against the mighty or the powerful, it is not aimed at presidents or prime ministers, it was aimed at ordinary working-class Londoners.”
Yet Livingstone has in the past labeled Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi a “man of peace” and a “moderate,” despite the fact that Al-Qaradawi has supported suicide bombings and the targeting of American allies.
Livingstone welcomed Al-Qaradawi to London’s City Hall last year as an honored guest, and the mayor appeared in a video shown at a solidarity conference for the sheikh on Feb. 17 of this year in Doha, Qatar. Livingstone has publicly defended the sheikh against critics in the media and various grassroots organizations.
The Anti-Defamation League has labeled Al-Qaradawi the “Theologian of Terror,” while the website GayEgypt.com has dubbed him the “Dr. Goebbels of modern Egypt,” for Al-Qaradawi’s anti-homosexual rhetoric.