Thousands of French prepare demonstrations in tribute to the professor beheaded for showing cartoons of Muhammad

A protester holds up a cover of the weekly Charlie Hebdo in Rennes (AFP)

Against terror, mobilization. This Sunday will be held in France important demonstrations in tribute to Professor Samuel Paty, murdered on Friday for having shown his students some cartoons of Muhammad, an attack for which 11 people have already been arrested.

The heads of the main political parties, associations and unions will demonstrate this Sunday starting at 15 (local time, 13 GMT) in Paris and in other cities like Lyon, Toulouse, Strasbourg, Nantes, Marseille, Lille and Bordeaux.

The satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo He was also associated with the call for the demonstration in the capital, which will take place in the Plaza de la República, a traditional place for protests. This central square was the epicenter of the huge march on January 11, 2015, following the attacks against Charlie Hebdo and in a kosher supermarket, in which 1.5 million people participated.

On Friday, around 5 p.m., Samuel Paty went beheaded near the high school where he was teaching History and Geography, in a quiet neighborhood of Conflans-Sainte-Honorine, 30 kilometers northwest of Paris. The attacker, an 18-year-old man, was killed by the police.

Samuel Paty

Samuel Paty

This new Islamist attack caused great commotion in the country. On Saturday, hundreds of people gathered in Nice (southeast) and Rennes (west) to denounce an “act of barbarism” and defend “the values ​​of democracy”.

The Association of Mayors of France (AMF, for its acronym in French) on Saturday urged all municipalities to pay tribute to the victim, proposing to hang a sign in all buildings with the slogan “#JeSuisEnseignant” (“I am a teacher”) and respecting a minute of silence in the next municipal plenary session, in addition to raising the flag of the mayor’s office at half mast for one day.

On Wednesday a national tribute will be held in coordination with the family of the murdered professor, announced the Elysee, without specifying the place. This Sunday there will be a Defense Council chaired by the Head of State, Emmanuel Macron. “Other expressions were foreseen [de apoyo] and announcements after the meetings ”, announced the Executive.


“Before and after”

Prime Minister Jean Castex indicated that the government is preparinga firmer, faster and more effective response strategy when a teacher is threatened”. “The State will live up to the commitment [de los docentes] and he will respond with the utmost firmness to all the enemies of the Republic, ”Castex told the Journal du Dimanche newspaper.

From the Republican party (LR, conservative) it was proposed that the murdered professor be buried in the Pantheon, necropolis of the great French personalities, in what would be a “strong symbolic act.”

In Conflans-Sainte-Honorine, where the attack took place, elected politicians and anonymous citizens of all ages gathered on Saturday afternoon in front of the Bois d’Aulne secondary school, where Paty worked, in an emotional act. Many of them carried banners that read “I am a teacher” or “I am a teacher.”

Demonstration near the school where the teacher taught (AFP)

Demonstration near the school where the teacher taught (AFP)

“There will be a before and after from October 16 as a teacher: for the first time, a teacher is attacked for what he teaches,” said Lionel, a geography and history teacher from the neighboring town of Herblay.

The students also seemed very affected, as Marie, who went to her old school to lay some flowers in “tribute to her former teacher.”

“I remember your class on free speech. We talked about Charlie, we made some drawings that are still hanging in the center ”, explained the young woman, excited.

An act of “revenge”

The assailant, killed by the police after the attack, was identified as Abdoullakh A., an 18-year-old Russian Chechen, born in Moscow and a refugee in France with his family, the national anti-terrorist prosecutor, Jean-François Ricard, told the press.

He had no criminal record, although he did have a misdemeanor.

On your phone investigators found a message addressed to Emmanuel Macron, “the leader of the infidels”, in which he explained that he wanted revenge on the person who “dared to belittle Muhammad”, and the photo of his beheaded victim. Some content that had also been published on Twitter.

When talking about him, his neighbors described a “discreet” young man, “steeped in religion” for three years.

His parents, grandfather and younger brother, among others, were arrested in Evreux (north-west) on Friday night.

This Sunday, the police arrested one more person, which rises to eleven the number of arrested for the case, indicated police sources.


The Police investigate a “radicalized agitator” and the possibility of a “virtual fatwa”

One of those arrested for the beheading of the teacher is the father of one of his students

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