Calls to boycott French products increase after Macron’s statements on Islam

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Posted in: Monday 26 October 2020 – 5:36 am | Last update: Monday, October 26, 2020 – 5:40 am

Calls to boycott French goods have gained momentum in Islamic countries in response to French President Emmanuel Macron’s support for the cartoons offensive to the Prophet of Islam, Muhammad.

Macron had declared after the beheading of French teacher Samuel Batey in a Paris suburb earlier this month after displaying cartoons offensive to the Prophet Muhammad in a classroom, that France “will not abandon our cartoons.”

The cartoons were displayed on government buildings in France on Friday, sparking outrage in the Arab world.

And calls for a boycott of French goods and hashtags in defense of the Prophet Muhammad spread very much on social media.

In Egypt, social media users made fun of Macron by portraying him as a “dog” in posts on those sites. A list of French brands such as Peugeot and Renault car companies, and well-known Albanian names such as Kerry and Danone, was circulated and called for a boycott.

In Kuwait, 50 cooperative societies announced that they had removed all French products from their branches in the Gulf state, according to Al-Qabas news website.

In Qatar, it is also reported that stores have removed French products from their shelves.

The Organization of Islamic Cooperation condemned the publication of satirical cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad, describing them as “harmful to French Islamic relations.”

The Jordanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs also criticized the continued publication of these cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad “under the pretext of freedom of expression.”

The Moroccan Ministry of Foreign Affairs followed the same approach echoing “strongly worded” statements, condemning the continued publication of “disgraceful cartoons.”

The ministry said in a statement that “freedom of expression can not, under any circumstances, justify an insult … the Islamic religion, which includes more than two billion people around the world,” adding that it condemns all acts of violence committed in the name of Islam.

The cartoons were also condemned by Egypt’s Al-Azhar University, the influential educational home of Sunni Islam.

Ahmed Al-Tayeb, the sheikh of Al-Azhar in Cairo, said in a statement that the attack on the Prophet Muhammad was part of a systematic campaign to use Islam to win political battles.

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