FaithWorld

Banned Paris “sausage and wine” party goes ahead at Arc de Triomphe

aperogeant1 (Photo: Protesters at the Arc de Triomphe, 18 June 2010/Benoit Tessier)

A “sausage and wine” party went ahead in Paris despite a police ban but was staged near the Arc de Triomphe instead of in a neighbourhood with many Muslim residents as originally planned.  Friday’s event had been criticised as highly provocative because it was planned for the day of weekly Muslim prayers and the World Cup soccer match between England and Algeria, a former French colony that is majority Muslim.

The mayor of Paris had said the event was “clearly inspired by extreme right-wing movements.” Paris police banned the party in the multiethnic Goutte d’Or neighbourhood because it risked sparking disturbances. The French daily Le Parisien estimated that 600 to 800 people gathered on the Champs Elysées near the Arc de Triomphe to eat pork sausages and drink wine at what organisers called a “giant cocktail party.”

The event was announced on Facebook late last month and drew criticism from politicians and civic groups because the Facebook page contained thinly veiled anti-Muslim slogans.  A similar party planned for a largely Muslim area of Lyon in eastern France was cancelled after pressure from the police, the organiser said on the event’s Facebook page.

Read the full story here.

aperogeant2 (Photo: Protester (in tan hat)  waves pork sausage at a “sausage and wine party” on 18 June 2010/Benoit Tessier)

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Paris bans open-air “sausage & wine party” over Muslim concerns

sausageA giant “sausage and wine” party planned later this week in a Paris neighbourhood with many Muslim residents risks sparking disturbances and will therefore be banned, police in the French capital announced on Tuesday.

The event, announced on the social networking site Facebook late last month (see page here in French), had drawn growing criticism from politicians and civic groups in recent days as its page containing barely disguised anti-Muslim slogans attracted over 7,000 members. (Photo: French sausages on display at the Paris International Farm Show, February 28, 2004/Charles Platiau)

The event, called an “apéro géant” (giant cocktail party), was due on Friday.  The main organiser, Sylvie François, wrote that she wanted the event to be “a joyous protest” against the closing down of roads in the Goutte d’Or neighbourhood every Friday by Muslims praying in the street outside the overcrowded mosque there. The Facebook page also appeared to signal the party’s thrust with appeals to “native Parisians” and complaints about “the resolute foes of our local wines and pork products.”