Paris, France – Reactions to the practice in the country are growing, as are statements by President Macron and senior French officials following the beheading and killing of a teacher in France. Both from within the country and from many Muslim countries, there are calls for a reaction and boycott of France, and there are steps back from the alarmed French.
The reaction to the beheading of a teacher in France, as well as statements by President Emmanuel Macron and senior French officials, is growing.
While demonstrations are held in many Muslim countries, critical statements that have become the first item on the world agenda follow each other.
Iran has summoned France’s charge d’affaires in Tehran to the Foreign Ministry because French officials, especially French President Emmanuel Macron, have defended cartoons targeting the Prophet Muhammad and made anti-Islam statements.
Iran condemned “any derogatory and disrespectful attitude towards the prophet of Islam and the values of the Islamic religion, regardless of their position,” the Iranian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
Foreign Minister Jawad Zarif also evaluated the French President’s rhetoric on Islam. “To humiliate 1.9 billion Muslims and their holy ones is an opportunistic abuse of freedom of expression.
This would only fuel fanatical extremists,” he said, without mentioning Macron’s name, adding that Muslims were the biggest target and victim of hate speech.
Vatan Emrooz newspaper, which publishes in Iran, featured French President Macron on its front page yesterday. The Tehran-based newspaper used the phrase “The Demon of Paris” in the form of the devil because of its statements targeting Muslims.
Saudi Arabia is also “declared that it condemned” cartoons insulting Prophet Muhammad and any attempt to link Islam to terrorism.”
“Saudi Arabia rejects any attempt to link Islam to terrorism, ” the country’s official news agency SPA quoted Foreign Ministry sources as saying. Prophet of peace. It condemns cartoons that insult Muhammad or any other prophet,” the statement said.
“Freedom of thought and culture should be a compass that leads to respect, tolerance and peace,” the statement said, condemning all acts of terrorism, regardless of who the perpetrator is. There were also statements from Yemen, Jordan and Indonesia reacting to France.
In addition, protests continue. In addition to Pakistan, demonstrations were also held in Occupied East Jerusalem in Israel. Palestinians protested Macron’s statements and anti-Islam practices in the country.
The French were alarmed when Muslim countries boycotted France. France’s Ambassador to Stockholm, Etienne de Gonneville, argued that France was a Muslim country.
“France is a Muslim country,” said Etienne de Gonneville, the French Ambassador to Stockholm, who appeared on the Agenda program on Swedish public television. Islam is France’s second religion. There are between 4 and 8 million French of Muslim descent. First, We want to listen to our Muslim citizens., “he said.
The Swedish announcer said, ” then what do they want from you?”the French Ambassador, angry at the question, said,” Please listen without interrupting, I will tell you.”
The French ambassador said they were respectful of normal Muslims and criticised radical Muslims.
Jean-Luc Melenchon, a former French presidential candidate and leader of the far-left “unyielding ” France, said he would not support President Emmanuel Macron in his debate with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, saying Macron had lost control of the situation.
Melenchon said in an interview with France Inter radio that he had repeatedly supported Macron before, but that the best thing he could do now would be to remain silent.
“The President (Macron) is making a series of tweets that no one understands why, ” said Melenchon, who suggested that the French President did not question why he was allied with Turkey in Nato, which he faced in Syria and Libya. Macron has completely lost control of the situation,” he said.
“Instead of begging for support now, the president better think about what his strategy will be, ” the Far-Left leader said. France has been ridiculed, what does (Macron) plan to do other than tweet?” said.
“Turkey is a great country, but France should not interfere in its internal affairs,” French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin told France Inter radio.
Darmanin, who suggested that they were fighting “radical Islamism” rather than a religion in the country, noted that most Muslims follow France’s laws.
Darmanin did not respond to a question about whether Saudi Arabia meddled in France’s internal affairs.
Darmanin said that it is necessary to see that there are those who are hostile to France in the country, and at a meeting of the Council of Ministers, he will propose the closure of the Muslim humanitarian association Barakacity.
Huge anti-France rally in Bangladesh capital over Macron’s cartoon defence
Tens of thousands of protesters marched through the Bangladesh capital on Tuesday in the biggest anti-France rally since President Emmanuel Macron defended cartoons depicting the Prophet Mohammed.
Muslims across the world have reacted furiously to Macron’s robust defence of the right to mock religion following the murder of a French schoolteacher who had shown his pupils cartoons of the prophet.
In Syria people burned pictures of France’s leader, tricolour flags were torched in the Libyan capital Tripoli, while French goods have been pulled from supermarket shelves in Qatar, Kuwait and other Gulf states.
Protesters in Dhaka set alight to an effigy of Macron during Tuesday’s march in which police said 40,000 people took part.
Hundreds of armed officers used a barbed-wire barricade to stop the demonstrators, who dispersed without violence before they could get close to the French embassy in the Bangladeshi capital.
The rally was called by Islami Andolon Bangladesh (IAB), one of the country’s largest Islamist parties, and started at the biggest mosque in the nation, which is around 90 percent Muslim.
“Boycott French products”, demonstrators chanted as they called for Macron to be punished.
Ataur Rahman, a senior Islami Andolon member, told the rally at the Baitul Mukarram national mosque: “Macron is one of the few leaders who worship Satan.”
Rahman called on the Bangladesh government to “kick out” the French ambassador while another protest leader, Hasan Jamal, said activists would “tear down every brick of that building” if the envoy was not ordered out.
“France is the enemy of Muslims. Those who represent them are also our enemies,” said Nesar Uddin, a young leader of the group.
Even after the rally was halted, demonstrators marched down other streets chanting “Boycott France” and “Macron will pay a high price”.
The October 16 beheading of high-school teacher Samuel Paty by a Chechen extremist caused deep shock in France.
Paty had shown his students some of the Mohammed cartoons over which 12 people were massacred at the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in 2015.
Depictions of the Prophet Mohammed are seen as offensive by many Muslims, but in France such cartoons have become identified with a proud secular tradition dating back to the Revolution.
In the aftermath of Paty’s murder, Macron issued a passionate defence of free speech and France’s secular way of life, vowing that the country “will not give up cartoons”.
France has been targeted in a string of jihadist attacks that have killed over 250 people since 2015 and led to deep soul-searching over the impact of Islam on the country’s core values.
Some of the attackers have cited the Mohammed cartoons as well as France’s ban on wearing the Islamic face veil in public as among their motives.
Several suspected Islamist radicals have been arrested in dozens of raids since Paty’s murder, and about 50 organisations with alleged links to such individuals have been earmarked for closure by the government.
Earlier this month, Macron unveiled a plan to defend France’s secular values against a trend of “Islamist separatism”, and described Islam as a religion “in crisis”.
As the backlash over France’s reaction to the cartoons widened, leaders from European nations including Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Greece rallied behind Macron.
However, Islamic and Muslim-majority nations have hit out and protesters have taken to the streets, though not in near the numbers seen in Dhaka.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan — who has styled himself a defender of Muslims worldwide — has compared the treatment of Muslims in Europe to that of Jews before World War II, saying they were the object of a “lynching campaign”.
“You are in a real sense fascists, you are in a real sense the links in the chain of Nazism,” he said, after urging Macron to have “mental checks”.
Tehran has summoned a senior French envoy, the charge d’affaires, and the Saudi foreign ministry said on Twitter it denounced “the offensive cartoons of the Prophet”.
The Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim slammed Macron’s comments on Islam being in crisis as “offensive” and “unreasonable”, adding in a statement: “With freedom comes responsibility, a responsibility notably absent from the rabblerousing smears essayed by Monsieur le President.”
Macron has also drawn fire in Pakistan and Morocco, while the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas, the Taliban in Afghanistan and the Lebanese Shiite movement Hezbollah have also spoken out against France.
More demonstrations were planned for later on Tuesday in Gaza, the West Bank, Israel and South Yemen.