Thursday, January 15, 2015

French President Francois Hollande: "Muslims are the first victims of fanaticism, fundamentalism and intolerance"

    Thursday, January 15, 2015   No comments

French President Francois Hollande has vowed that his country will protect all religions, saying that Muslims are the main victims of fanaticism.

Speaking at the Arab World Institute, he said Islam was compatible with democracy and thanked Arabs for their solidarity over terrorism in Paris.

There are also funerals taking place for Charlie Hebdo columnist Elsa Cayat and Franck Brinsolaro, a policeman assigned to guard Charlie Hebdo editor Stephane Charbonnier.

Speaking on Thursday morning, Mr Hollande said the French were united in the face of terror.

"French Muslims have the same rights as all other French," he said. "We have the obligation to protect them. "Anti-Muslim and anti-Semitic acts have to be condemned and punished."


Mr Hollande said that radical Islam had fed off contradictions, poverty, inequality and conflict, and that "it is Muslims who are the first victims of fanaticism, fundamentalism and intolerance".


France has deployed thousands of troops and police to boost security in the wake of last week's attacks. There have been retaliatory attacks against Muslim sites around France.

Charlie Hebdo published a new edition on Wednesday, with an image on the cover showing the Prophet Muhammad weeping while holding a sign saying "I am Charlie", and below the headline "All is forgiven".

Mr Hollande declared Charlie Hebdo magazine "reborn" after the magazine sold out in hours.

'Big hug'

But some Muslims were angered by the edition and Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu condemned it on Thursday as an "open provocation".

"Freedom of the press does not mean freedom to insult," said Mr Davutoglu, who on Sunday attended a Paris march in memory of the victims of last week's attacks.
 

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Ed Isr

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