Legal proceedings began against a French cartoonist facing charges of inciting “racial hatred” with drawings some consider anti-Semitic and anti-Islamic.
Maurice Sinet, the cartoonist for the far-left weekly, Charlie Hebdo, was at the center of a heated, free-speech debate in France this summer, which some in the French media even likened to the Dreyfus affair.
Sinet, better known as Sin??, was fired by his editor, Philippe Val, for refusing to apologize for a July cartoon in which he said Jean Sarkozy, 22, the politically ambitious son of the French president, would “go far” for converting to Judaism before marrying his Jewish fianc??, Jessica Sebaoun-Darty.
To date, there is no evidence that the young Sarkozy, a city councilor and center-right UMP party leader in the wealthy suburb of Neuilly, plans to convert to Judaism.
The French human rights group, The International League Against Racismand Anti-Semitism, LICRA, filed suit against Sin?? for inciting racial hatred for both the July cartoon and a June drawing that mocks Muslim women who wear head scarves. The proceedings opened in Lyon on Tuesday, with both sides presenting their list of witnesses.
Major French political and intellectual figures are divided overwhether Sin??’s firing was deserved, with petitions signed and circulated over the Internet by both camps.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.