2018-06-11 10:47:03 UTC
Protests over plan for Muslim rapper to perform at Bataclan
A row erupted has over a planned performance by a controversial Muslim
rapper at the Bataclan, where 90 people were killed during the November 2015
Laurent Wauquiez, leader of the conservative party, The Republicans, said
the concert would be "a sacrilege for the victims and a dishonour for
Two lawyers acting for relatives of those killed and injured in the Bataclan
massacre said they would launch legal action to get Médine's planned shows
on October 19 and 20 cancelled on the grounds that they pose a threat to
Right-wing MPs started an online petition titled "No to the rapper Médine",
which has garnered more than 9,000 signatures.
Médine, whose full name is Médine Zaouiche, is known for provocative lyrics
about Islam and France's secular tradition. One of his albums is called
However, the 35-year-old rapper, born in the Channel port of Le Havre, has
offered his condolences to the families of those killed in the Paris
attacks. He says he is against violence and the jihad he is referring to is
an individual, internal struggle.
Liberals see him is an artist who wants to shock people into thinking about
difficult issues in new ways, but lyrics such as "I put fatwas on the head
of jerks" and "crucify the secularists" have shocked and disgusted
Jean-François Copé, the mayor of Meaux, near Paris, and a former head of The
Republicans, said it was "intolerable and completely mad" to allow Médine to
perform at the Bataclan. He demanded that President Emmanuel Macron ban the
Marine Le Pen, leader of the far-Right Front National, which has been
renamed as Rassemblement National (National Rally), tweeted: "No French
person can accept that this bloke goes and pours out his filth at the scene
of the #Bataclan."
Bruno Retailleau, a Republican senator, urged the government to employ "the
same weapons against this rapper as those used against Dieudonné," a
comedian who has been convicted and fined for hate speech against Jews and
condoning terrorism. Several of Dieudonné's shows were banned under the
former government of President François Hollande.
The row comes after survivors and families of victims of the Bataclan
attack, which was claimed by Isil, filed a legal complaint on Friday over
the failure of soldiers near the venue to intervene. They had been ordered
not to enter the Bataclan. The case, which also seeks an explanation about
why special forces were not deployed, could prove embarrassing for military
commanders and political leaders in office at the time.