French comedian Dieudonne arrested over Charlie Facebook post


(JTA) — French comedian Dieudonne M’bala M’bala was arrested for making a Facebook comment in sympathy with the Paris kosher supermarket gunman.

Dieudonne, who has multiple convictions for inciting racial hatred against Jews, was arrested Wednesday on suspicion that he incited to terrorist acts, the French news agency AFP reported.

His statement appeared following the killing of 17 people in three attacks last week in Paris.

“Tonight, as far as I’m concerned, I feel like Charlie Coulibaly,” Dieudonne wrote in a takeoff on the French expression for “I am Charlie.” The expression is being used in support of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, where 12 people were killed on Jan. 7 by two Islamist gunmen.

Two days later, four Jewish men were killed at a kosher supermarket in Paris by Amedy Coulibaly, who had killed a policewoman the previous day. Coulibaly reportedly had maps in his car marking the locations of Paris Jewish schools..

Dieudonne later removed the comment from his Facebook page.

He has been convicted seven times for inciting racial hatred against Jews and is facing an eighth trial for suggesting during a show that the French Jewish journalist Patrick Cohen belonged in a gas chamber. Dieudonne also is the originator of the quenelle, the increasingly popular gesture in France and Europe that has been called anti-Semitic and a quasi-Nazi salute.

Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve on Monday called Dieudonne’s remark “contemptible,” according to AFP. Dieudonne retorted by saying in a statement, “The government is ruining my life for making people laugh.”

Dieudonne reportedly participated in the Paris unity march on Sunday to express his support for free speech.

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