Kamel Kabtane, rector of the Great Mosque of Lyon has made a “clear and precise position” concerning his opinion about the Islamic State of Iraq. The French Council of the Muslim Faith recently released a statement stating, “The CFCM calls on French Muslims to reaffirm their commitment to religious liberty and to respect the beliefs of each human being, wherever they are located.”
However, this statement was not sufficient for Kabtane. “It must be said that the Muslim community is against the massacres of Christians in Iraq,” he said. In Iraq, the Islamic State is persecuting Christians who live in the north of the country. Kabtane believes that “French Muslims would be proud to severely condemn the abominations committed by the executioners in the self-proclaimed Islamic State.” “They are bastards over there…In France, Muslims wish to leave peacefully” he added.
According to the Kabtane, public opinion confuses extremist groups with traditional believers. He stresses that one must not confound “Muslims with all fanatic groups,” and adds that “public opinion is infected with this poison.” Kabtane is known to act autonomously from the French Council of the Muslim Faith.