Since October 7, 2023, we have witnessed an increase in Islamophobic and anti-Semitic acts and remarks. Many mosques in France and citizens of the Muslim faith have been the subject of direct threats. An uninhibited outpouring of hatred of Muslims is also expressed on social networks and in mass media.
In addition to repeat offenders, habitual authors of anti-Muslim statements on television channels, a member of the Council of State, Mr. Arno Klarsfeld, made remarks with complete impunity assimilating the Muslims of France to potential terrorists without be called to order, despite the numerous reports to which he has been the subject.
The presidents of both parliamentary chambers of our country have just called for a march against anti-Semitism and to demand the unconditional release of hostages held in Gaza.
The CFCM has always fought and will continue to fight against anti-Semitism. The latter is a poison and a decline of the spirit that must be fought tirelessly. The same must be true for all other forms of hatred and racism that are currently rampant, particularly against citizens of the Muslim faith. None of these forms should be ignored. The dignity of those who are its victims is the same, as is their suffering.
The call for the release of innocent hostages held in Gaza is a humanitarian necessity. The CFCM shares their suffering and anguish and that of their loved ones. It is unbearable not to call at the same time for an end to the indiscriminate bombings which not only cause thousands of victims, the majority of them children and women, but also endanger the lives of the hostages.
Furthermore, not calling for the lifting of the inhumane blockade which is suffocating more than two million people detained in a prison which is transformed day after day into a mass grave is deplorable.
This march, which has the exclusive objective of denouncing anti-Semitism without a word on Islamophobia, is unfortunately not likely to bring people together. It can also be interpreted by Islamophobes as a sign of impunity.
The CFCM also recalls that during the march against Islamophobia on November 19, 2019, political and religious leaders refused to march against Islamophobia on the pretext that “Islamists” would appear in the procession.
The CFCM therefore understands the reluctance of French people of Muslim faith to march today alongside declared and assumed anti-Muslim racists.
The CFCM has no lessons to learn in its fight against anti-Semitism and all forms of hatred. He leaves his fellow citizens free to decide whether or not to participate in this march.
Paris, November 8, 2023
The French Council of Muslim Worship (CFCM)