Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

No strategy and a beige suit

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014

Read more

ENCORE!

Alain Choquette: A Hilarious Magician in Paris

Read more

FOCUS

France welcomes Iraqi Christian refugees

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Emmanuel Macron: A new economy minister with a pro-business agenda

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

More of this year's best Observers stories

Read more

#TECH 24

Changing the world, one video game at a time

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Socialist Party summer conference kicks off in explosive atmosphere

Read more

  • US aid drops begin in besieged Iraqi town of Amerli

    Read more

  • Filipino UN troops escape Islamists in Golan Heights

    Read more

  • Algerian diplomats held by Islamists are freed in Mali

    Read more

  • Poland's Tusk, Italy's Mogherini set for top EU jobs

    Read more

  • Pakistani protesters clash with police outside PM's house

    Read more

  • Austerity row overshadows French Socialist’s annual rally

    Read more

  • Egypt sentences Brotherhood leader Badie to life

    Read more

  • Ceasfire allows Gaza families to relax on the beach

    Read more

  • South Africa condemns 'military coup' in Lesotho

    Read more

  • Exclusive: Fabius warns Russia of more sanctions

    Read more

  • Kerry calls for 'coalition of nations' to battle IS militants

    Read more

  • Police hunt for British boy with brain tumour taken to France

    Read more

  • Ukrainian plane with seven on board crashes in Algeria

    Read more

  • IMF backs Lagarde amid French corruption probe

    Read more

  • British killer escapes from French psychiatric hospital

    Read more

  • Libyan PM resigns as Islamists set up rival administration

    Read more

France

‘F*** tourism’ tagged on entrance to Sacré-Coeur in Paris

© AFP

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2014-03-19

The Sacré-Coeur, a 19th century basilica perched atop Montmartre in Paris, was discovered to have been vandalised on Wednesday morning, its doors tagged in red paint with the words “Neither God, nor master, nor state” and “Down with the authorities”.

The marble entrance to the Sacré-Coeur was also defaced with red and black graffiti, which read “F*** tourism” and “Set fire to the chapels”.

One of the French capital’s most famous monuments, the basilica draws millions of visitors each year to its pristine white edifice, stunning domes and sweeping view of the city. The vandalism, which comes just four days ahead of municipal elections in Paris, was swiftly reprehended by the outgoing mayor, Bertrand Delanoë.

“I strongly condemn the graffiti that was sprayed last night on the entrance of the [Sacré-Coeur]. Such defacement, and it’s not the first, is unacceptable,” he said.

Anne Hidalgo, who is Delanoë’s deputy mayor and the Socialist Party’s pick to succeed him after Sunday’s mayoral election, also denounced the act, as did her rival Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet, a candidate for the conservative UMP party, who called for a “strong response” to the incident.

French Interior Minister Manuel Valls also weighed in on the issue, labelling the tags “offensive to Catholics as well as severely damaging to a monument emblematic of Paris’s architectural patrimony”.

As Delanoë hinted, this is far from the first time the Sacré-Coeur has been targeted. Anarchists and other far-left activists have regularly expressed their hostility toward the monument, which is widely believed to have been built as a symbolic punishment of supporters of the Paris Commune, a revolutionary, working-class government that rejected the ruling bourgeoisie and governed the city briefly in 1871.

Just a few months ago, Ian Brossat, a leading Communist Party member in Paris, suggested the basilica be closed down and replaced with a “solidarity space”.

Date created : 2014-03-19

  • FRANCE

    A tale of two women: Paris set to get first female mayor

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    Mayoral hopeful would tear down Paris’s tallest skyscraper

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    Paris mayoral candidate seeks to transform 'phantom' metro stops

    Read more

COMMENT(S)