۱۳ آذر ۱۳۹۹ | Dec 3, 2020
Muslim world unites against Macron's Islamophobic comments

French President Emmanuel Macron's remarks defending cartoons insulting Prophet Muhammad have caused outrage among Muslims across the world triggering a campaign to boycott French products.

Hawzah News Agency - French President Emmanuel Macron's remarks defending cartoons insulting Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) have caused outrage among Muslims across the world triggering a campaign to boycott French products.

His statement came after a French school teacher, Samuel Patty, was beheaded by a Chechen-origin teenager for displaying the cartoons in a class on freedom of speech.

Early this month in France, Macron's statements about “the need to reform Islam” drew reactions from Muslims all over the world.

Macron, referring to Islam as “a religion in crises across the world”, claimed that “the Muslims in France have ideologies that defend separatist ideas”.

French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin said on Oct. 13 that 73 mosques, private schools and workplaces had been shut down since the beginning of the year due to “the fight against radical Islamism”. Additionally, he said he was bothered by the halal food sections in markets, giving perspective to the French government's take on freedom of belief.

French government’s attitude against Muslims have led to an increase in Islamophobic actions and racist attacks in the country.

Just recently, two Muslim women of Algerian origin were stabbed near Eiffel Tower, and on Sunday two Jordanian brothers were exposed to racist violence in Paris.

Despite all this, French authorities continued encouraging the insulting cartoons initially published by the Charlie Hebdo magazine under the guise of "freedom of expression".

After the teacher's killing, these cartoons were displayed on some public buildings of the country.

- Campaign boycotting French products in Muslim countries

As many Islamic countries including Turkey condemned France’s Islamophobic actions unanimously, campaigns boycotting French products were launched on social media. Some countries removed French products off shelves at markets.

French Foreign Ministry panicked as the calls for boycott grew dramatically. On Sunday, the ministry issued a written statement calling for this boycott to stop.

Top-level reactions from Turkey

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in a speech on Oct. 7 that Macron's “Islam in crisis” statement was a clear provocation, and described his expression as “impudence and rudeness”.

The Foreign Ministry said: “It is not anyone’s place to subject our great religion, which means 'peace' to false and distorted approaches under the pretext of 'enlightenment'."

Ali Erbas, the head of religious affairs, said the hanging of cartoons targeting Prophet Muhammad on public buildings in France indicates that Islamophobia is supported by officials and called on the international community to fight against actions offending Muslims.

Upon Macron’s support for cartoons insulting Prophet Muhammad in France, Erdogan criticized Macron and said he needs “mental treatment”.

Organization of Islamic Cooperation

The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) called on France to revise its separatist policies that target Islam and offends over one and a half billion Muslims in the world.

OIC said: “We condemn the constant systematic attack on the feelings of Muslims by insulting the religious symbols represented by the person of the Prophet Muhammad."

Pakistan Prime Minister Khan warns against Islamophobia

Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan said that Macron by attacking Islam was hurting the feelings of Muslims and encouraging Islamophobia.

In a tweet, he said Macron was intentionally provoking Muslims, including his own citizens, by displaying the insulting cartoons.

Siraj ul Haq, leader of the mainstream religious Jamaat-e-Islami party, also condemned Macron’s remarks, calling on Muslims to unite in action.

Reactions from Iran

The French leader's actions also drew strong reactions from the government and parliament of Iran.

The Foreign Ministry said that insults and disrespect toward Prophet Mohammad are unacceptable and that the French government's attitude toward Muslims had caused hatred to rise more than ever.

The strongest reaction from Iran came from Parliament Speaker Mohammad Bagher Ghalibaf who said the evil deed of these dishonorable people reveal their disbelief in Allah and their hostility toward all heavenly religions.

Iraq, Syria and Yemen

In Baghdad, a protest rally was taken out on Sunday. Protesters carried posters of Macron crossed in red.

In the protests held in Syria and Yemen, demonstrators carried banners saying: “Prophet Mohammad is our red line.” Posters of Macron were set on fire during the demonstrations.

Protesters in Palestine carry Turkish flag

Protesters in Palestine carried the Turkish flag during demonstrations and burned posters of Macron.

They also carried posters of Turkish President Erdogan, citing his advocacy for Islam and the Prophet Muhammad.

Palestinians gathered in the province of Ramallah in the occupied West Bank holding banners that read: “Our Prophet is the red line."

The Palestinian Islamic Jihad Movement said in a statement that Macron's disregard for the feelings of Muslims encourages extremism and racism.

Daoud Shihab, spokesman of the group, told Anadolu Agency: “Turkey represents the Islamic world in the face of Western racism and Turkey is the vivid conscience of Muslims.”

Hamas in a statement said they deeply resented the stance coming from France.

Kuwait

Kuwait's Foreign Minister Sheikh Ahmed Al Nasser Al Sabah, Parliament Speaker Marzouq Ali Thunayan Al-Ghanim and the political wing of the Organization of Muslim Brotherhood (Ikhwan), the Islamic Constitutional Movement Party (HADES) and some of its deputies condemned the statement by Macron and the publication of cartoons insulting Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).

Moreover, the Union of Consumer Cooperative Society, which has more than 70 retail chains in Kuwait, announced that all French products were removed from their shelves as of Oct. 23.

Al Azhar Sheikh Ahmad al-Tayyeb in Egypt said in a statement that we are witnessing a planned campaign for dragging Islam into a political conflict and creating chaos that starts with a deliberate attack against Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).

Egyptians living in Turkey called for the boycott of French products and tourism.

Hundreds of protesters gathered in the southern province of Tataouine called for the boycott of French products with banners that read “Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) is our red line”.

Independent deputy in the Tunisian parliament, Yassine Ayari, as a reaction to the insults against Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and Muslim beliefs in France demanded the cancellation of the Francophone Summit that was planned to be held in Tunisia.

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