French President Emmanuel Macron gave an exclusive interview where he responded to the uproar by the French Muslim community.
In the interview, he expressed his “understanding” of the “feelings of Muslims” offended by cartoon displays of the Prophet Muhammad. He, however, stated his intention to confront radical Islam which he views as a threat to all people - especially Muslims. The recent shooting of a Greek Orthodox cleric shocked the country as two more people were arrested over the killings at Niece.
Marcon speaksDuring the interview, Macron tried to cool down the tensions by saying he “understands” the feelings stirred up by the cartoons and “respects them”. Macron argued that he might not agree with what the publishers are thinking or drawing but he is obligated to perform his role as a protector of the freedoms enjoyed by all french citizens including the publishers of the cartoons caricatured by Charlie Hebdo. For several years they have caricatured the Jewish religion, Christianity. Macron described his office obligation to “calm things down” and “protect those rights.”
Response to ErdoğanThe recent exchange between the French President and his Turkish counterpart began after Erdoğan said that the French president ‘needs treatment’ and ‘mental checks’ over what he perceives is his attitude towards Islam and Muslims. The Turkish president and his conservative AK party have governed for almost two decades. France recalled her Turkish ambassador after the rebuking comments while terming them as “unacceptable.”
ProtestsIn the past week, anti-France protests have drawn tens of thousands across the Muslim world. Demonstrations hit the streets in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Ethiopia, Bangladesh, the Palestinian territories, and several other places.
In Islamabad, the protest turned violent as 2000 people tried to storm their way into the French embassy forcing the police to use batons and fire teargas. Islamist activists trampled over the effigy of the French president with their shoes.
Worshippers in Istanbul, Turkey thronged a Shia mosque after Friday prayers chanting anti-Macron slogans. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s earlier criticism of Macron prompted the French president to recall their ambassador to Turkey last weekend.
Anger towards Emmanuel Macron grows in Muslim world https://t.co/QpIPELGfcZ
— The Guardian (@guardian) October 28, 2020
Ph: Frederic Legrand - COMEO / Shutterstock.com