Darmanin of France in Turkey: stay out of France’s internal affairs

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FILE PHOTO: French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin looks on before a visit by French President Emmanuel Macron on the fight against separatism to the headquarters of the Seine-Saint-Denis prefecture in Bobigny, near Paris, France on October 20, 2020. Ludovic Marin / Pool via REUTERS

PARIS (Reuters) – Turkey must not interfere in France’s internal affairs, Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin said on Tuesday after Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan called for a boycott of French products, citing the agenda “Anti-Islam” of French leader Emmanuel Macron.

Erdogan’s comments on Monday were the latest expression of anger in the Muslim world at the images posted in France of the Prophet Muhammad, which some Muslims consider blasphemous. Erdogan also questioned Macron’s sanity, prompting Paris to recall its ambassador to Ankara.

“It should shock all of us that foreign powers are meddling in what is going on in France,” Darmanin told France Inter radio, adding that he was referring to Turkey and Pakistan, where the parliament has adopted a resolution urging the government to recall its envoy from Paris.

“Turkey must not interfere in the internal affairs of France,” Darmanin added.

The dispute has its roots in a knife attack outside a French school on October 16 in which a man of Chechen descent beheaded Samuel Paty, a teacher who had shown students cartoons of Mohammad in an education lesson civic policy on freedom of expression.

President Emmanuel Macron, who met with representatives of the French Muslim community on Monday, pledged to fight “Islamist separatism”, saying he was threatening to take control of certain Muslim communities in France.

Reporting by Dominique Vidalon; Edited by Catherine Evans

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