Terry Jones, the Florida pastor who supervised the burning of the Koran last month, said he’s not backing down after receiving death threats.
Jones said he feels no responsibility for the violence sparked by his church’s action, including the violent protest at a United Nations complex in Afghanistan Saturday that left at least 11 people dead – and 20 killed in weekend violence.
Jones said his beliefs are more important – even at expense of American soldiers.
“Perhaps in the long run, we may save hundreds or thousands,” Jones said.
When asked what would he say to the mother of American soldier about his statement, he said, “We don’t take it lightly…we can’t let it eat us up.”
Top U.S. officials including General David Petreaus and Mark Sedwill, NATO civilian representative in Afghanistan condemned the burning saying they “hope the Afghan people understand that the actions of a small number of individuals, who have been extremely disrespectful to the holy Koran, are not representative of any of the countries of the international community who are in Afghanistan to help the Afghan people.”
Of Saturday’s violence, Jones said it proved his point.
“We wanted to raise awareness of this dangerous religion and dangerous element,” Jones said. “I think [today’s attack] proves that there is a radical element of Islam.”
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