A Swedish politician invited the wrath of critics after he said in a party conference that Muslims were not "completely human". Martin Strid now faces expulsion from his party, Sweden Democrats (Sverigedemokraterna, SD), as the political organisation distances itself from the controversial remarks.
Strid, who hails from the Swedish town of Borlänge, said that there was a scale of humanity from 1 to 100 and added: "On one end of the scale, you are 100 percent human, a person, everything that's part of that concept. At the other end, you are 100 percent Mohammedan."
He said the Isis members "are close to being 100% Mohammedan," and continued: "If you are an ex-Muslim you have come quite far towards being fully human."
Strid went on to add that the party's goal is to release "Muslims from Islam" and make them join the Swedish political party. Following his comments he has been reported to the local police for hate speech, local media reports say.
The party has quickly denounced Strid's remarks and said that it did not represent the organisation's view of Muslims.
"It's a statement that we, from the party leadership, take a clear distance from," the SD said in a statement.
SD's secretary Richard Jomshof said Strid's comments were racist and added: "This is very bad, extremely bad. We had the chance to get our policies out [through the conference, ed.] and the only thing the media are writing about is this."
As criticism over his speech snowballed, Strid was forced to apologise.
"It was very unfortunate and I expressed myself very clumsily," the politician told the local channel TT, according to the Daily Local. "If you are stressed and in a hurry, you can sometimes express yourself wrongly. I have realised [this] and it's very unfortunate. I know a lot of Muslims and am good friends with a lot. People are people, of course."