France declared war on radical Islam. On September 30, 2020 French President Emmanuel Macron revealed his government is in the process of drafting a law to fight “Islamist separatism” which will be presented to Parliament in December.
In a speech in the Paris region Macron described Islam as “a religion that is in crisis all over the world today” due to “an extreme hardening” of positions. Macron declared that “Islam in France must be freed from foreign influence” promising to promote secular values in France while conducting improved oversight of the financing of mosques.
Macron acknowledged that the French state was partly responsible for the “ghettoisation” of communities with large numbers of Muslim residents, saying that non-secular organisations have sought to make up for “failings” of “integration policy”. “Where we stepped away, they stepped in,” he said.
The French President urged immediate crackdown on radical Islamists following the beheading of the teacher Samuel Paty by a Muslim immigrant in reaction to displaying controversial cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad by Paty to his pupils as part of a discussion about free speech
On October 20, 2020 Macron said the Sheikh Yassin Collective – an Islamist group named after the founder of the Palestinian militant group Hamas – would be outlawed for being “directly involved” in the killing. He said the ban was a way of helping France’s Muslim community, Europe’s largest, from the influence of radicalism.
The French government also ordered a mosque to close for sharing videos on Facebook calling for action against Mr Paty and sharing his school’s address in the days before his death.
Sheikh Ali Al-Yousuf of the International Union of Muslim Scholars said in an October 18, 2020 interview on Channel 9 (Turkey) that from the perspective of Islamic law, one cannot say that the Chechen teen who recently beheaded French history teacher Samuel Paty is guilty of a serious crime. Rather, he said that the teen’s transgression was that he took it upon himself to carry out the death penalty for insulting the Prophet Muhammad, while the sentence should be carried out by a shari’a court in an Islamic state.
Sheikh Al-Yousuf said that people should focus on the fact that Paty had been teaching people to “hate” the Prophet Muhammad, and he argued that France is undergoing a crisis, since “Islam is growing because of its moral values.”
Imam Karim AbuZaid, the Imam of the Colorado Muslims Community Center (Dar Al-Tawheed) in Aurora, Colorado, mocks Macron’s policy emphasizing that Islam is not in a crisis but France due to the changing demography.
In an Friday sermon at Colorado Muslims Community Center Karim AbuZaid said:
Islam is spreading like fire spreads in dry wood. His own people are accepting Islam. One out of every ten in France are Muslim. Can you imagine that? So where is the crisis Mr. Macron? People are liking the whole religion. What is wrong with you? Oh you’re afraid because they say in less than 50 years in the year 2050 Islam will pass Christianity. Is that why? That is the real crisis… This religion will reach as far as the day light and the night the darkness of the night reaches. Basicaly every place in the face of this Earth. And it will enter every single home…
Brothers and sisters in Islam it is so great to feel good to feel confidence about your religion… So don’t worry about Islam Mr. Macron. Islam is not in crisis we have actually a long-term plan beyond your life and the life of your kids. But the question that I ask myself and my brothers who are listening to this sermon what are you going to do?… How did they (Muslim sons) feel when they heard this guy saying this about Islam? How did they feel? Did your son come and say what is this guy saying about my religion? Huh! There is where we can make a change… It’s going to take time. Now we have to contribute to this. Look at your child and if you don’t have one to look at a Muslim child that’s why we have schools. I tell you if there is a project out there that is of benefit to the Muslim Ummah (brotherhood) it’s Islamic schools.
As of yet a thorough search of social media has not indicated any comment on this issue by Canada’s prime minister Justin Trudeau, the leading Muslim advocacy organization (National Council of Canadian Muslims – NCCM) and the Muslim Parliamentary Caucus.
Trudeau’s position on Islam stands in stark contrast to the policy espoused by the French government. In 2015 Trudeau said “we need to make sure that we’re working with communities like the Muslim community, for example, to demonstrate that Islam is not incompatible with free and open Western societies.” According to Trudeau, “Canadians are quick to point out that ISIS is wrong, that Islam is not incompatible with the Western secular democracy, a free place like Canada.”