World Bulletin / News Desk
Egypt's new president delivered a call on Tuesday for "genuine cooperation" between cultures, but in the wake of violent assaults on U.S. diplomatic missions in the Muslim world he also cautioned that a joke in one culture may not be funny in another.
Speaking at a philanthropic meeting convened in New York by former U.S. President Bill Clinton, Mursi signaled an embrace of multiculturalism as an alternative to a single culture seeking dominance.
"The world cannot become one culture or one civilization. However, can we have civilizations that live side by side, not against one another? It is possible," said Mursi. "Maybe a joke in one country is not funny in another country. That's the nature of culture."
Mursi's speech comes one day before he is to address the United Nations General Assembly.
An anti-Islam film posted on YouTube provoked protests across the Muslim world this month.
The anti-American protests have cast new shadows over U.S. engagement with the region, and President Barack Obama said in a recent interview that the United States considered Egypt's Islamist government neither an ally nor an enemy.
Mursi, who was elected in June, recently told The New York Times that Washington must change its approach to the Arab world and help build a Palestinian state to reduce pent-up anger in the region.
Mursi addressed the controversy over the YouTube film directly, calling it a work of religious defamation. He said that while as a Muslim he viewed human life as sacred, he added that "physical violence is not the only form of violence."
"While we must acknowledge the importance of freedom of expression, we must also recognize that such a freedom comes with responsibilities especially when it has serious implications for international peace and security," he said.
He also challenged the international community to develop a new model of global governance that would aid the world's needy and promote dignity.
"I simply cannot watch the blood that's shed in Syria or the children that are starving in Gaza and claim that our model of global governance works," Mursi said.
The government also emphasised that current negotiations about the divorce are "inextricably" linked to future trade arrangements and should therefore be discussed at the same time.
The boat carrying Iraqis and Syrians, including 23 children, was intercepted late Sunday in the Black Sea in Romania's southeastern Constanta region, officials said.
The former Prime Minister of Kosovo, Bajram Rexhepi, died at 63 in Turkey, where he was being treated in a hospital after a cerebral hemorrhage that put him into coma.
Juba refuses that UN-approved Regional Protection Forces be deployed to capital's airport
Abderrahman Mechkah, who came to Finland from Morocco in 2016, receiving medical treatment after being shot by police
Former Deputy Foreign Minister Anatoly Antonov will take up responsibilities as ambassador
"I am resigning due to the fact that I am running for the presidency. I do not have the moral right to remain in this post," Jeenbekov said in a speech to parliament shown by state broadcaster KTR.
The pontiff said humanitarian corridors should be set up for those in need -- a move that could prevent the deaths of people attempting perilous journeys across deserts and seas.
Incident at bus stops in Marseille; local prosecutor rules out terrorism
She said she was "angered" by German auto giants who in the "dieselgate" scandal either broke the law or used legal loopholes, but also pointed to the at least 800,000 jobs in the crucial industrial sector.
UK government says distinctive historic bell, which rang out across British capital for 157 years, needs repairs
Nigerian leader was in London for more than 3 months due to health reasons
Iraqi army launched a military operation on Sunday to capture Tal Afar
Reports suggest manhunt for attacker widened to include southern Europe
Prime Minister Theresa May told 'decisive action' needed on faulty electrical appliances after tower block fires