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With the brutal and pitiless beheading of Samuel Paty on October 16th 2020 for teaching schoolchildren about satire, a strong defence of secularism and freedom of expression from President Emmanuel Macron, and widespread condemnation of French secularism as blasphemy by Islamists across the world, there is little doubt that France has become a flashpoint for the confluence of far right backlash against Muslims, the battle over freedom of expression versus offending religious sensibilities, and issues over the feasibility of immigrant assimilation. These issues will undoubtedly be exacerbated by another recent Islamist attack on October 29th, 2020, in Nice, France in which a man armed with a knife killed three people – two women and a man – in a terrorist attack at a church From Ankara to Dhaka to Islamabad, Islamists and their followers have decried Macron and France as catalysing prejudice and fomenting anti-Muslim hatred through defending satirists’ rights to freely express views that are offensive to some.

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