The Israeli Chief Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef. (Photo: Via MEMO)

Israel’s chief Rabbi, Yitzhak Yosef, has stoked a new controversy by describing Afro-Americans as “monkeys” during one of his weekly religious lessons.

Yosef, whose status as chief rabbi is constitutionally recognised, is no stranger to inflammatory remarks having previously issued a “religious edict” encouraging the killing of any Palestinian armed with a knife.

Yosef made the remarks as he cited a hypothetical story about encountering a black person in the US. He referred to black people using the pejorative Hebrew word “kushi”, which refers to a dark-skinned person usually of African descent, and called a black person a “monkey”.

“We don’t say a blessing for every negro,” said Yosef while explaining that praise and blessing is only said for the “negro” whose father and mother are white. “If you know, they had a monkey for a son, they had a son like that,” blessing shouldn’t be offered to them, he explained.

Palestinian and international human rights activists and organizations condemned the racism of Israel’s Chief Rabbi. 

Palestinian-American journalist and author, Ramzy Baroud said,

“the Israeli national project is predicated on racist principles. While Palestinians bear the brunt of this horrifying view of the world, African refugees in Israel have also suffered greatly.”

Baroud added, “we, as Palestinians renew our solidarity with our African-American brethren whose fight for equality is one and the same as the Palestinian fight for freedom, equality and human rights.”

(MEMO, PC, Social Media)





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