Cartoons, separatism, trial of the Charlie attacks: tensions between France and Egypt

(illustration) French President Emmanuel Macron also crystallized the discontent of Arab networks (photo of October 28, 2020) AP Photo / Christophe Ena

Text by: Alexandre Buccianti

3 min

France is experiencing an unprecedented degradation of its image in the Arab world.

A situation reflected in social networks where the overwhelming majority of Muslims but also a large part of Eastern Christians attack France in a more or less violent manner.

At the origin of this campaign the republication of the cartoons of Mohammed.


Read more

from our correspondent in Cairo,

This campaign actually began with the start of


Charlie Hebdo

bombings trial,

which gained momentum over the stabbing attacks and French reactions on the networks.

In various forms the hashtags # except the prophet of Allah and # except the beloved of Allah have assembled hundreds of thousands of posts and many have called France systematically "the enemy of Allah and of his prophet ”.

The colonial past of France, described as "bloody" has also been decried.

See also

: Trial of the January 2015 attacks: 3 accused positive for Covid-19, the hearing adjourned

The tweet of former Malaysian Prime Minister

Mahatir Mohammad

where he wrote that "Muslims have the right to be angry and to kill millions of French people in revenge for the massacres of the past" was loved and echoed by thousands of times before Twitter took it down.

Today the dominant trend on Arab networks is the multiplication of calls to boycott French products.

French President Emmanuel Macron has also crystallized the discontent of Arab networks

In the beginning there was the discourse on “Islamist separatism”.

Internet users have largely taken up the accusation of "racism" made by this moral authority of Sunni Islam that is the Great Mosque of al Azhar in Cairo.

The speech after the beheading of teacher

Samuel Paty

outright inflamed Arab networks with rough translations that the French president "approved and supported" the "offensive" cartoons against the prophet.

To read also

: the word “separatism” erased from the title of the law, precaution or retreat?

The cartoons against the French president have multiplied.

Emmanuel Macron's attempted explanation on the Qatari news channel

Al Jazeera

poured fuel on the fire with the hashtag #Macron you won't deceive us #.

The French president is now being asked to apologize personally.

To read also

: Caricatures: Emmanuel Macron explains himself on

Al Jazeera

and denounces "the manipulations"

However, there are voices that go against the grain

Arab voices rising, not to defend France, but against the resurgence of Islamism through this campaign.

For defenders of secularism, many of whom keep a low profile, Islamists, especially the Muslim Brotherhood, took the opportunity to again spread their suppressed ideology in Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates where the brotherhood is considered " terrorist ”.

The fact that Emmanuel Macron chose

Al Jazeera

, a channel considered favorable to Islamists, is seen as a "mistake".


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  • France

  • Egypt

  • Charlie hebdo

  • Emmanuel Macron