Pope Francis Defends Charlie Hebdo Killers: If You Curse My Mother “You Can Expect a Punch”
Pope Francis said there are limits to freedom of expression following the Charlie Hebdo massacre.
Six of the Charlie Hebdo journalists and staff members killed in Wednesday’s attack are pictured together in this photo, taken in 2000. Circled top from left is Philippe Honore, Georges Wolinski, Bernard Maris and Jean Cabut. Below them on the stairs, from left, is editor Stephane Charbonnier and cartoonist Bernard ‘Tignous’ Verlhac. (Daily Mail)
— The Independent (@Independent) January 15, 2015
The Pope appeared to defend the Islamic Charlie Hebdo killers, “If my good friend says a curse word against my mother, he can expect a punch.”
The AP reported:
Pope Francis said Thursday there are limits to freedom of expression, especially when it insults or ridicules someone’s faith.
Francis spoke about the Paris terror attacks while en route to the Philippines, defending free speech as not only a fundamental human right but a duty to speak one’s mind for the sake of the common good.
But he said there were limits.
By way of example, he referred to Alberto Gasparri, who organizes papal trips and was standing by his side aboard the papal plane.
“If my good friend Dr. Gasparri says a curse word against my mother, he can expect a punch,” Francis said, throwing a pretend punch his way. “It’s normal. You cannot provoke. You cannot insult the faith of others. You cannot make fun of the faith of others.”
Many people around the world have defended the right of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo to publish inflammatory cartoons of the Prophet Muhammed in the wake of the massacre by Islamic extremists at its Paris offices and subsequent attack on a kosher supermarket in which three gunmen killed 17 people.