The Anti-Defamation League, a New York-based Jewish rights group, has called on Poland's new prime minister to reconsider the appointment of the country's new defense minister over an anti-Jewish remark that he allegedly made 13 years ago.

The defense minister, Antoni Macierewicz, denied through a spokesman ever making the offensive remark and said he condemns anti-Semitism in all its forms.

The national director of the rights group, Jonathan Greenblatt, wrote to Beata Szydlo, the country's new prime minister, in a letter earlier this week to protest the alleged remark from 2002.

Greenblatt wrote that although the statement was made many years ago, "it indicates profound and virulent anti-Semitism. We trust that you would not allow anyone of such convictions to be a member of your government."