Iran's President Greeted with Harsh Words at Columbia University

NEW YORK (AP) -- Iran's president has been greeted at Columbia University with some harsh words from the school president.

Lee Bollinger took his guest to task over Iran's human-rights record and foreign policy. And, to loud applause, he scolded Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for behaving like "a petty and cruel dictator."

The Columbia president said Ahmadinejad's denial of the Holocaust might fool the ignorant, but said, "When you come to a place like this it makes you simply ridiculous."

Ahmadinejad smiled as he waited his turn to speak, then accused Bollinger of "unfriendly treatment" under the influence of the U.S. press and politicians.

The Iranian president said Bollinger's remarks were "incorrect" and "an insult to information and the knowledge of the audience."

His appearance at Columbia has drawn protests.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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