Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

Controversial rapper cancels Bataclan concerts

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

Brett Kavanaugh hearings: Trump challenges Supreme Court nominee's accuser

Read more

#THE 51%

One is not enough: China to encourage people to have more children

Read more

ENCORE!

A Pulitzer Prize-winning 'Trajectory': Richard Russo on writing small town America

Read more

#TECH 24

Hacking the body, and the mind: The future of connected humanity

Read more

REPORTERS

Colombia: Cursed by coca in Catatumbo

Read more

FOCUS

Britain’s Labour Party: No home for Jews?

Read more

IN THE PRESS

Outfoxed: The mystery of the ‘Croydon Cat Killer’

Read more

YOU ARE HERE

Backstage at the Moulin Rouge

Read more

France

French comedian investigated for jokes on Foley murder

© AFP archive photo

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2014-09-06

A controversial French comedian is under investigation for condoning terrorism after comparing the murder of US journalist James Foley by Islamist militants to the beheadings of the French Revolution, saying they symbolise “progress".

Dieudonné M'Bala M'Bala, who has been convicted a number of times for making anti-Semitic jokes, said that decapitation "symbolises, before anything, progress – access to civilisation" in a video that appeared on the Internet last month.

The Paris prosecutor’s office said police were starting a preliminary investigation into Dieudonné on the grounds that he had condoned terrorism with the remarks.

Foley was beheaded by militants of the Islamic State (IS) organisation last month after being kidnapped while covering the Syrian conflict and held for 20 months. The act caused outrage around the world.

In the video, titled "Foley That Was", Dieudonné noted that the 2011 killing of ex-Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi and that of former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein, who was hanged in 2006, never aroused the same indignation as Foley's death.

"The Rothschild Mafia says no, that's OK – but James Foley, that's too much," Dieudonné says, an apparent but unexplained reference to the prominent Jewish banking family.

The video also showed some footage of the killing.

"I think decapitation symbolises, before anything, progress – access to civilisation," he said. "In France, we decapitated people in front of the masses, on the public plazas."

Dieudonné, 46, has been repeatedly fined for hate speech in France where local authorities in several towns have banned his shows as a threat to public order.

Although he says he is not anti-Semitic, public authorities say he owes more than €65,000 in fines related to past convictions for making anti-Semitic comments.

He is also credited with inventing the "quenelle", a gesture that critics have likened to an inverted Nazi salute and say carries anti-Semitic overtones.

(FRANCE 24 with REUTERS)

 

Date created : 2014-09-05

  • FRANCE - UK

    Banned from UK, Dieudonné gives Queen 'quenelle' salute

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    French court orders comic Dieudonné to remove parts of YouTube video

    Read more

  • BELGIUM

    'Anti-Semitic hatefest' with Dieudonné banned in Brussels

    Read more

COMMENT(S)