French police detained around 100 alleged Salafist Muslims on Saturday for taking part in an unauthorized demonstration outside the US embassy in Paris. The crowd was protesting a US-made film which has sparked global unrest since Tuesday
Police in Paris detained around 100 people Saturday for taking part in an unauthorised, impromptu demonstration near the US embassy against a provocative anti-Islam film, police said.
Dozens of men, women and children who police said were possibly linked to Salafists, “demonstrated violently around the US embassy and clashed with police” on Saturday afternoon.
Two or three officers were slightly hurt in the protest. Most of those detained were men, said police.
The president of the French Council of the Muslim Faith (CFCM) denounced the Paris protest.
“We regret that this demonstration occurred, especially if violent force was used against the police,” Mohamed Moussaoui said.
“One should not associate all of France’s Muslims with marginal events like this,” he added.
“Muslims should use fair and lawful means to defend their religion. This message was relayed by imams at mosques during Friday prayers,” he said.
France is home to Europe’s largest Muslim community.
The last several days have seen a wave of anti-American protests across the globe, sparked by the US-produced “Innocence of Muslims” film.
The film, excerpts of which were posted on the Internet, have offended many Muslims because of its insulting depiction of the Prophet Mohammed.
Islamic law prohibits any depiction of the prophet.
The protests, which started on Tuesday, have cost several lives and seen mobs burn US missions, schools and businesses as well as the embassies of some western countries.