The German government condemned on Friday any comments that might damage the goal of Middle East peace as "unhelpful," when asked about remarks on Jews that Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi is reported to have made in 2010 when he was a Muslim Brotherhood leader.

"I will not comment on the remarks that have been attributed to Mr. Morsi," a spokesman for the German foreign ministry told a news conference ahead of a visit by President Mursi to Germany next week.

"But for the German government it is clear that reducing tensions and working towards a long-term solution is the top priority in the Middle East. This applies not only to Egypt, but also to Egypt. Aggressive or hurtful comments from any side are unhelpful."

In 2010, Morsi called Israelis “descendants of apes and pigs” and said peace talks with Zionists were a waste of time.

Morsi's statements were presented in a compilation prepared last week by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) and posted on the institute’s website. It shows parts of interviews Morsi gave that were disseminated or broadcast by Lebanon’s Al-Quds TV.

“Either [you accept] the Zionists and everything they want, or else it is war,” Morsi is seen saying on one video. “This is what these occupiers of the land of Palestine know – these blood-suckers, who attack the Palestinians, these warmongers, the descendants of apes and pigs.”