Indonesian Muslims protest Macron’s stance on Muhammad cartoons
Jakarta, Nov 2 (efe-epa).- Muslims protested on Monday in several Indonesian cities against French President Emmanuel Macron after he defended controversial cartoons of the Islamic prophet Mohammed.
Demonstrators burned and trampled on photographs of the French leader, who they accused of being a “terrorist” in marches that took place in the capital as well as other cities of the archipelago, including Surabaya and Bandung.
“We Indonesian Muslims criticize and condemn the French President Emmanuel Macron who spreads hatred of Islam, protects and defends the insults to the Prophet Mohammed,” one banner read at a mobilization in front of the French embassy in Jakarta.
Protesters in Indonesia joined a wave of demonstrations that have been held by Muslims in countries including Turkey, Libya, Bangladesh, Iraq, Turkey and Pakistan against Macron, who has also exchanged recriminations with his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Indonesian President Joko Widodo accused the French leader on Saturday of having equated Islam with terrorism and offending Muslims.
He also condemned the latest jihadist attacks in France, which have left four victims dead, two of them decapitated.
Macron’s controversy with Muslims dates back to the beginning of October when he said that Islam is in crisis around the world due to pressure from fundamentalists.
He also announced measures to defend secularism and contain Islamic extremism in France.
On Thursday, a Tunisian man killed three people – one of whom was decapitated – in a knife attack on a cathedral in Nice.
He was shot by police during his arrest and taken to hospital.