'No attempts to desecrate Quran'Source: IANS.Washington, May 13: Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has deplored any attempt to desecrate the Quran while outlining President George W. Bush's agenda of reaching out to befriend Muslim populations around the world.In a testimony before the US Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on State, Foreign Operations and Related Programmes on the $33 billion allocated to the State Department, Rice prefaced her remarks by denouncing any alleged desecration of the Muslim holy book.She said that President Bush emphasises religious freedom and that an investigation would be carried out regarding a Newsweek article's allegations that interrogators at Guantanamo Bay prisons had flushed the Quran down a toilet."
Disrespect for the Holy Quran is not now, nor has it ever been, nor will it ever be, tolerated by the United States," said Rice in an attempted damage control caused by the Newsweek article to Washington's already bruised image in the Islamic world."We honour the sacred books of all the world's great religions. Disrespect for the Holy Quran is abhorrent to us all."
She appealed to Muslims around the world not to give in to attempts by Islamic fundamentalists to portray America as the bad guy. "I am asking that all our friends around the world reject incitement to violence by those who would mischaracterise our intentions," she urged.Rice also outlined Bush's foreign policy agenda during her testimony and dwelt on her recent trip to India.She said she had congratulated both India and Pakistan on behalf of President Bush for the steps they had taken in building warmer relations."In Islamabad, I discussed the need to chart a democratic path for Pakistan, including the holding of national elections in 2007," she said in line with Bush's foreign policy priority of building free and democratic nations around the world."With India, the world's largest democracy, we are cooperating on a global strategy for peace, and on defence, energy and growth," she said, adding, "A few weeks ago, India's foreign minister met with President Bush and they discussed ways we might accelerate our cooperation still further and we look forward to a July visit by Prime Minister (Manmohan) Singh."I DON'T BUY THE CRAP YOU ARE SELLING,LADY.My heartfelt congragulations to NEWSWEEK on this enlightening article.