Islamic preacher Zakir Naik apologised for making racially sensitive remarks in Malaysia, a day after he was questioned by police for hours over the comments.
Naik, who faces charges of money laundering and hate speech in India, has come under fire for comments that pitted Malaysia’s ethnic and religious minorities against the predominantly Muslim Malay majority.
On August 3, Zakir Naik had said Hindus in Malaysia have “100 times” more rights than Muslims in India. He made remarks against the Chinese Malaysian community that Malaysian Chinese were guests of the country.”
He apologised for those comments today, claiming his comments had been taken out of context.
“It was never my intention to upset any individual or community,” Zakir Naiks said in his statement, adding, “It is against the basic tenets of Islam, and I would like to convey my heartfelt apologies for this misunderstanding.”
Naik has permanent residency in Malaysia. Several ministers called for his expulsion after his controversial remarks and at least seven states have barred him from speaking in public.