Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

'Where is the solidarity for Somalia?'

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Liberia's presidential election: Results trickle in as observers give thumbs-up

Read more

THE DEBATE

France's Weinsteins: Watershed moment in fight against sexual abuse?

Read more

FOCUS

A shield and a target: France's anti-terrorism operation 'Sentinelle'

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

#MeToo and #BalanceTonPorc expose extent of sexual harassment

Read more

ENCORE!

Musical maestro Philippe Jordan on bringing passion to the Paris Opera

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Black day for democracy': Malta in mourning after top journalist is murdered

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Has the Weinstein scandal 'freed' women from their silence?

Read more

THE DEBATE

Europe’s newest face: Kurz’s election win indicates rightward shift for Austria

Read more

France

Hollande says extremism ‘destroys’ Islam’s principles

Latest update : 2012-09-18

French President François Hollande said that extremism “destroys the principles and values of Islam” as he opened a new wing at the Louvre museum that will house a vast collection of Islamic art.

At the inauguration of a new 100-million-euro Islamic art wing at the world-renowned Louvre museum in Paris Tuesday, French President François Hollande slammed the destruction of UNESCO world heritage sites in Mali by extremists and warned that fanaticism is contrary to the principles of Islam.

Hollande stated: “The honour of Islamic civilisations is to be older, more alive, more tolerant than some of those who claim today to abusively speak on their behalf. It is the exact opposite of obscurantism, which destroys the principles and destroys the values of Islam, bringing violence and hatred.”

‘Aggression against all civilisations’

The French president went on to say that the destruction of an ancient mausoleum in northern Mali over the weekend was evidence of extremists’ “unfathomable stupidity.” He continued: “Throughout the world – because it amounts to an aggression against all civilizations – when heritage is ransacked, we will be there to fight against these groups.”

Since Islamic militants overran northern Mali in March, radical militants have destroyed the centuries-old tombs of Muslim saints in the region. On Saturday, witnesses said Islamists destroyed the mausoleum of Cheik El-Kebir, 330 kilometres from the city of Gao. Two months ago, the al Qaeda-linked fighters took picks and hammers to the ancient Djingareyber mud mosque in Timbuktu.

Islamic art at the Louvre

The Department of Islamic Art was opened at the Louvre in 2003, but has been closed since 2008 for a state-of-the-art refurbishment. The collection groups 18,000 treasures and many of the pieces are being exhibited for the first time.

The new section will boast a prominent location inside France’s most famous museum, and is funded by the French government and by generous endowments from the governments of Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Kuwait, Oman and Azerbaijan.

(FRANCE 24 with wires)
 

Date created : 2012-09-18

  • MALI

    Mali requests military assistance to free north

    Read more

  • JAPAN

    Louvre to send art to Japan's Fukushima

    Read more

  • ART

    Louvre ditches audio guides for Nintendo consoles

    Read more

COMMENT(S)