Tuesday Jan 03, 201205:02 PM GMT
Iran cleric praises new 'Islamic Mideast'
Fri Jan 28, 2011 12:41PM
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Ayatollah Seyyed Ahmad Khatami
Senior Iranian cleric Ayatollah Seyyed Ahmad Khatami has praised the recent popular uprisings in the Arab world, saying they herald the creation of “an Islamic Middle East.”

The interim leader of Tehran's Friday Prayers was referring to the recent historic revolution in Tunisia and massive protests in Egypt, Jordan, and Yemen.

"Incidents that are happening in the Middle East and the Arab world should not be regarded simply," he told worshippers on Friday.

"To those who do not see the realities I clarify that an Islamic Middle East is being created based on Islam, religion, and democracy with prevailing religious principals," Ayatollah Khatami was quoted as saying by IRNA.

Egypt's largest opposition group the Muslim Brotherhood on Thursday called on the country's people to continue protests after the weekly Muslim prayer congregation of Friday.

Muslim Brotherhood spokesman Essam al-Arian warned that Egypt would "explode" if the government does not listen to the people.

Police clamped down on anti-government protesters in the Egyptian capital of Cairo on Friday.

The leader of Tehran's interim Friday Prayers said the recent uprisings in the Arab world have Islamic support as people came to the streets with the slogan of "God is the Greatest."

Ayatollah Khatami also praised the congregational prayers in Tunisia days after the revolution ousted former President Zine El Abidin Ben Ali from power.

A vast majority of Tunisia's population is Muslims and committed to Islamic values.

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