Tension mounts between Paris and Ankara in the context of the Conflans-Sainte-Honorine attack and Emmanuel Macron's speech on "separatism".

The president therefore decided to recall the French ambassador based in Turkey.

A rare diplomatic decision. 

The invective in the dramatic context of the assassination of Samuel Paty has not passed: Emmanuel Macron replied sharply on Saturday to the new attacks by his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and recalled the French ambassador to Paris, an act rare diplomatic.

The Elysee denounced the remarks deemed "unacceptable" by the Turkish president - who had questioned "the mental health" of Emmanuel Macron because of his attitude towards Muslims -, but also noted "the absence of messages of condolence and support of the Turkish President after the assassination of Samuel Paty ", a week after the beheading of the teacher by an Islamist near Paris.

An immediate reminder from the French ambassador in Ankara

The French wrath is reflected in the immediate recall of the French ambassador to Ankara, it seems for the first time in the history of Franco-Turkish diplomatic relations.

The act, says the entourage of Emmanuel Macron, is "a very strong signal".

The previous recall to Paris of a French ambassador "in consultation", as the saying goes, dates back to February 2019, to protest against a meeting between Luigi di Maio, then Italian deputy prime minister, and "yellow vests" .

Last November, Recep Tayyip Erdogan had already questioned the mental health of Emmanuel Macron, responding to the words of the French president on the "brain death" of NATO by inviting him to "examine his own brain death".

"Insults and provocations from Erdogan, we have had almost every week this summer," we admitted on Saturday in the entourage of President Macron.

What would change this time is "the context".

Internationally, it is stressed, "the lines have shifted. We have awakened the European partners to the risk posed by Erdogan" in the eastern Mediterranean, in the conflict between Azerbaijan and Armenia, in Libya or even in Syria.

In France especially, the Conflans Sainte-Honorine attack led the executive to step up the initiative already underway against political Islam, arousing the anger of the Islamo-conservative Turkish leader.

Ankara's "excess" and "rudeness"

Two weeks ago, Recep Tayyip Erdogan denounced as a provocation the statements of his French counterpart on "Islamist separatism" and the need to "structure Islam" in France, while the executive presented its future bill on this theme.

He hammered home the point on Saturday in a televised speech: "All that can be said of a head of state who treats millions of members of different religious communities in this way is: go and do mental health examinations ".

For the Elysée Palace, Ankara's "excess and rudeness" pass less than ever, two days after the ceremony of homage to Samuel Paty at the Sorbonne.

In his speech Thursday evening, Emmanuel Macron had notably promised that France would continue to defend the cartoons.

Since then, according to the president's entourage, "the Turks have been disseminating a sort of absurd propaganda, for example that the president has decided to project the caricatures of Mohammed on public buildings".

Calls to boycott French products have also been increasing since Friday in several Arab countries in reaction to the presidential speech at the Sorbonne.

In the eyes of Paris, "there is an Islamist campaign against France. It is organized, it is not the result of chance, and the transmitters are largely Turkish".