Similar demonstrations as in the French capital are planned in other cities across the country, such as Lyon, Toulouse, Strasbourg, Nantes, Marseille, Lille and Bordeaux, according to AFP.
Friday’s horrific murder of a French history teacher literally shocked France and evoked memories of the bloody attack on Charlie Hebdo in 2015. At the time, around 1.5 million people gathered in the Place de la République in Paris to defend freedom of expression. Similarly, Education Minister Jean-Michel Blanquer called for support for French teachers and for an expression of solidarity and unity.
The meeting in Paris was also attended by Prime Minister Jean Castex and Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo, according to AFP.
The teacher is already the target of threats on online networks
On Saturday, prosecutor Jean-Francois Ricard explained that Paty had already been the target of threats on online networks for showing cartoons of Muhammad to students as part of civic education. Such caricatures are very upsetting for radical Islamists, who believe that the portrayal of the Islamic prophet is blasphemous, writes STA.
The teacher was murdered by 18-year-old Chechen Abdullah Anzorov, who had refugee status in France. After the attack on the teacher, he was later killed in a clash with police.
The student’s father published his address
Police have arrested eleven people so far in connection with the murder. Among them is the father of one of his students, who was horrified online that Paty was showing cartoons of Muhammad, and demanded that he be fired from school. He also called for “mobilization” against the teacher. He also published the teacher’s name and the address of the school, where the killer was also looking for him, according to AFP.
An attacker beheaded a teacher in a Paris suburb