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Islamic groups angry over Mohammed comment

Jan. 18, 2008 at 2:06 AM

GRAZ, Austria, Jan. 18 (UPI) -- Austrian officials are trying to distance themselves from a politician who described the prophet Mohammed as a child abuser.

Susanne Winter, a member of Austria's conservative Freedom Party, told a rally of 3,000 supporters in the city of Graz Sunday that the community was threatened by what she described as "an Islamic immigration tsunami" and that half of Austria's population would be Muslim "within 20 to 30 years," The Independent newspaper said.

Winter then cited references to the religious leader's marriage to a 9-year-old and said, "By today's standards, Mohammed would be considered a child abuser."

Walter Ferk, a leading Social Democrat and deputy mayor of Graz, said Winter's remarks were "pure racism and obvious discrimination against a community that has been recognized in Austria for many years," the newspaper said.

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