A female Lebanese TV host swatted down a London-based Islamic scholar and sheikh after he told her to “shut up” and said that it was “beneath” him to be interviewed by her because she is a woman.
The live interview took place during International Women’s Day weekend.
Host Rima Karaki was interviewing Islamist Sheikh Hani Al-Seba’i for Lebanon-based pan-Arab news station Al Jadeed this past weekend to discuss reports of Christians joining Islamic groups such as ISIS in the Middle East, when the scholar went off on a tangent, according to the Daily Mail.
Sheikh Al-Seba’i, who has reportedly said in the past that “anyone who is not a Muslim is a criminal,” dodged questions from Karaki about slogans and recruitment tools being used by Islamist groups to attract Christians. The sheikh became angry after Karaki sternly tried to redirect him back to the topic of discussion, to which he abruptly replied, “Listen, don’t cut me off. I will answer as I please.”
After the host told the Sheik she was able to get more time and told him that this was her show and she would decide the topics that would be discussed, he defiantly stated, “you can decide as much as you like, but I will do whatever I want.”
The situation then further escalated with the sheikh telling Karaki, “Are you done? Shut up so I can talk.” Karaki then asked, “How can a respected sheikh like yourself tell a TV host to shut up?!”
After the Islamic scholar told Karaki that he is respected regardless of whether or not she likes it, he gave her the kicker: “It is beneath me to be interviewed by you. You are a woman who…”
Karaki then ended the interview and the camera focused back on the studio, leaving the sheikh on the exterior and in the dark.
The video exchange has taken off tremendously on social media, raking in over 3.5 million views on YouTube and garnering traction under the hashtags #RimaKaraki, #InternationalWomensDay and #WomensDay.
According to the Daily Mail, Sheikh Hani Al-Siba’i’s controversial past includes a 2005 appearance on Al-Jazeera TV in which he said the London bombings were a victory:
If al-Qaeda indeed carried out this act [of the bombings], it is a great victory for it. It rubbed the noses of the world’s eight most powerful countries in the mud.
Follow Adelle Nazarian on Twitter @AdelleNaz