BARCELONA (JTA) — A Spanish newspaper published an interview with David Irving, a known Holocaust denier.
News of Saturday’s scheduled publication of the article in the leading Spanish daily El Mundo sparked anger among Israeli and Jewish leaders worldwide in the days leading up to the article’s appearance.
In a published letter to the editor, Israeli Ambassador to Spain Raphael Shutz said, “The unfortunate decision to interview Irving cannot be justified in the name of freedom of expression. It is just a reflection of the lack of ethics of those responsible, of their disdain towards the newspaper’s readers, towards the other interviewees and, obviously, towards the newspaper itself.”
The Anti-Defamation League blasted the interview, calling it an “embarrassment to Spain.”
“There is no reason to believe that the editors of El Mundo were deceived by David Irving, whose bona fides as Holocaust denier are well-known around the world,” said Abraham Foxman, the group’s national director and a Holocaust survivor. “Irving is the propagandists’ poster boy, and yet El Mundo presented him as a so-called ‘expert,’ as if his abhorrent views were credible. This sends a terrible message, legitimizes Holocaust denial and is an embarrassment for Spain.”
Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos said Saturday through a spokeswoman that he "regrets" El Mundo’s interview with Irving.
"The foreign minister, while maintaining the most absolute respect for freedom of expression, regrets that space was given to a historian who denies one of the biggest tragedies for humanity in modern history," the spokeswoman said Saturday in Stockholm on the sidelines of a meeting of European Union foreign ministers.