NEW YORK (JTA) — Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will deliver an alternative Christmas message on British television.
The Iranian president will tell British viewers in Farsi with English subtitles that "the general will of nations" is for a return to "human values," the BBC reported Wednesday.
This is the 16th year that Britain’s Channel 4 will present an alternative Christmas message to that of Queen Elizabeth II, though this year it will not be broadcast at the same time. The queen’s message will be aired at 3 p.m., while Ahmadinejad’s will be shown at night.
Ahmadinejad did not mention Israel by name; in the past he has intimated that he wished Israel did not exist.
"If Christ was on earth today, undoubtedly he would hoist the banner of justice and love for humanity to oppose warmongers, occupiers, terrorists and bullies the world over," Ahmadinejad said, according to a transcript of his speech.
Other public figures who have delivered the alternative message include French actress Brigitte Bardot, Sharon Osbourne, the Rev. Jesse Jackson and the animated television character Marge Simpson. Maj Andrew Stockton, a British soldier who lost an arm fighting in Afghanistan, delivered last year’s message.