Comedian cleared of anti-Jewish bias

A French comedian accused of making anti-Jewish comments in a January newspaper interview has had a conviction for racism and a fine overturned by an appeal court.

    French court: The comedian's skit did not target Jews as a whole

    The court in Nimes on Friday cleared Dieudonne M'Bala M'Bala, a 38-year-old of French-Cameroonian parents, by saying the two lawyers who said they were offended by his statements made to Le Monde newspaper could not claim to have been personally targeted by the words.

    The prosecution said it would appeal to the highest appeals court.

    The acquittal was another legal victory for the comedian, who is known in France simply as Dieudonne, following a Paris court's verdict in May rejecting a charge of racial defamation by Jewish lobby groups accusing him of racism in a television skit.

    He faced a fine of 5000 euros ($6700).

    Shows cancelled

    In the skit, Dieudonne dressed up as an Orthodox Jew and gave a Nazi salute.

    He later defended the skit by saying he had similarly caricatured other religions and, while not anti-Jewish, he was critical of Israeli policies and had a right to express himself freely for the purpose of humour.

    That court ruled that the routine, aired a year ago, targeted only right-wing Israelis and not Jews as a whole. Although the charges against the comedian have not stuck, he was forced to cancel a number of shows this year following a campaign by French Jewish groups.

    SOURCE: AFP


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Death from above: Every Saudi coalition air raid on Yemen

    Death from above: Every Saudi coalition air raid on Yemen

    Since March 2015, Saudi Arabia and a coalition of Arab states have launched more than 19,278 air raids across Yemen.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    How different voting systems work around the world

    How different voting systems work around the world

    Nearly two billion voters in 52 countries around the world will head to the polls this year to elect their leaders.