Following are excerpts from an interview with Sheikh Fikri Hassan, former Egyptian deputy minister of religious endowment, which aired on Al-Shabab TV on December 2, 2009.
· To view this clip on MERMI TV, visit http://www.memri.org/legacy/clip/2287.
"How Can the Building of Minarets Be Banned...? Switzerland Does Not Have Any Culture or History"
TV host Hamdi Abd Al-Maguid: "The issue of the ban on building mosque minarets in Switzerland still preoccupies public opinion in the Islamic world, if not the whole world. There are many reactions. The Islamic world, from the ocean to the Gulf, and from the north to the south... All the countries of the Islamic world have issued reactions, characterized by strong condemnation and deep sorrow.
"How can the building of minarets be banned in a country like Switzerland? Switzerland does not have any culture or history. It falsely boasts that it is democratic, as do the people of the West. When this democracy meets Islam, it becomes a huge dam."
Sheikh Fikri Hassan: "With regard to boycotting [Switzerland] – that’s a very important issue."
Hamdi Abd Al-Maguid: "Let me tell you something. We get good chocolate from Switzerland."
Sheikh Fikri Hassan: "Yes, the finest chocolate."
Hamdi Abd Al-Maguid: "We also get the best watches from Switzerland. Worse yet, billions of dollars are deposited by Arab dignitaries in Swiss banks. If the Islamic nation united... "
"If All Those Arab Dignitaries Withdrew Their Money from Switzerland..."
Sheikh Fikri Hassan: "Those dignitaries believe Switzerland can be trusted with their money. This is very unfortunate..."
Hamdi Abd Al-Maguid: "Think about it, Sheikh Fikri. If all those Arab dignitaries withdrew their money from Switzerland..."
Sheikh Fikri Hassan: "This would rock the foundations [of Switzerland]. The political party responsible for this..."
The Swiss Labor Party is a "Zionist Party"; There's a Swiss Soccer Club Called "Zion"
Hamdi Abd Al-Maguid: "The Swiss Labor Party..."
Sheikh Fikri Hassan: "This is a Zionist party with Zionist roots, and they finance..."
Hamdi Abd Al-Maguid: "Let me tell you something, the Egyptian soccer player, the goalkeeper Essam El Hadary, used to play for a club called 'Zion' in Switzerland. There is a club in Switzerland called 'Zion,' which is run by the Zionists."
 The reference is to FC Sion, the soccer team of the city of Sion, Switzerland.