Jacques Chirac, at the congress of the association of mayors of France, November 21, 2006. -
MEIGNEUX / SIPA
A statement by Jacques Chirac on the cartoons of Muhammad published in 2006 by
and other press titles resurfaced on social networks.
The former head of state affirmed his support for "freedom of expression", but called for it to be exercised "in a context of responsibility", while their publication had triggered demonstrations.
Is it to oppose the positions of two Presidents of the Republic that an old quote from Jacques Chirac resurfaces on social networks?
This message specifies that "in 2006, French President Jacques Chirac strongly condemned the
on the noble prophet Muhammed".
The Head of State would then have declared: “Anything that can hurt the convictions of others, in particular religious convictions, must be avoided.
Freedom of expression must be exercised in a spirit of responsibility.
If freedom of expression is one of the foundations of the Republic, it is also based on the values of tolerance and respect for all beliefs.
The message ends with a declaration that the former French president would have made in the Council of Ministers: "I condemn all manifest provocations, liable to dangerously stir up passions".
verified the authenticity of these quotes.
These comments date from February 8, 2006. They come from a statement still online on the Elysee website.
Contrary to what the viral message affirms, the president had not however “strongly condemned” these publications, but expressed a more nuanced position.
The president began by recalling that "freedom of expression is one of the foundations of the Republic".
He also stressed that this freedom "is also based on the values of tolerance and respect for all beliefs".
In his statement, the president also condemned "all violence perpetrated against nationals or foreign representations anywhere in the world".
He recalled "that, in accordance with international law, governments are responsible for the security of persons and foreign property installed on their territory".
Jacques Chirac was speaking after the publication by
of cartoons of Muhammad initially published in a Danish daily.
had republished them a week before
Le Nouvel Observateur
at the time.
Protests in several countries followed the publication of the cartoons in European newspapers.
Philippe Val, then director of
, had declared himself “shocked” by the words of the President of the Republic, reported
Philippe Val had decided to publish the cartoons out of "solidarity" with the director of
, dismissed because of this publication, also reported the daily.
Jacques Chirac, for his part, a few days earlier, made a statement in the same tone, recalling the principle of “freedom of expression”, but called for “the greatest spirit of responsibility, respect and measure”.
Macron had said he did not want to "give up cartoons"
The publication of these quotes from Jacques Chirac on Facebook appeared a few days after the national tribute to Samuel Paty, which took place on October 21 at the Sorbonne.
Contrasting with the position of Jacques Chirac, Emmanuel Macron had said: "We will not give up caricatures, drawings, even if others retreat.
Words that triggered a stir in the Muslim world.
Thursday, Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister of Foreign Affairs, sent "a message of peace to the Muslim world".
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