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Iranian President Casts Doubts on Holocaust, Says Issue Needs to Be ‘Investigated and Researched’

Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi reviews an honor guard during his official departure ceremony as he leaves Tehran's Mehrabad airport to New York to attend annual UN General Assembly meeting, early Monday, Sept. 19, 2022. AP
Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi reviews an honor guard during his official departure ceremony as he leaves Tehran’s Mehrabad airport to New York to attend annual UN General Assembly meeting, early Monday, Sept. 19, 2022. AP

The Iranian president’s comment that “there are some signs” that the Holocaust happened but that the issue required more research sparked an outcry on Monday from Israeli officials, who denounced the remarks as antisemitic Holocaust denial.

Hard-line President Ebrahim Raisi made the comment during an interview with CBS’ “60 Minutes” on the eve of his visit to New York for the U.N. General Assembly. When asked whether he believed the Holocaust happened, Raisi said there “are some signs that it happened.”

He added: “If so, they should allow it to be investigated and researched.”

Soon after the interview aired, outrage spread in Israel, a country home to tens of thousands of Holocaust survivors. The chairman of Israel’s official Holocaust memorial center, Yad Vashem, rebuked Raisi as a “despicable anti-Semite.”

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