PARIS – Actor Gerard Depardieu, singer Charles Aznavour and former President Nicolas Sarkozy are among some 300 well-known French people urging national action to counter a “new anti-Semitism” that they blame on rising Islamic radicalism.
They signed a manifesto published Sunday in Le Parisien newspaper, joining politicians from the right and left, as well as Jewish, Muslim and Catholic leaders.
The statement urges prominent Muslims to denounce anti-Jewish and anti-Christian references in the Qur’an as outdated so “no believer can refer to a holy text to commit a crime.” It also calls for combating anti-Semitism “before it’s too late.”
Justice Minister Nicole Belloubet said on France-Inter radio that the government must be vigilant against anti-Semitism and called for social unity.
Several French Jews have been killed by Islamic radicals in recent years.