French museums, media rally against racism

15th December 2004, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Dec 15 (AFP) - France on Wednesday unveiled a programme of events at cultural sites and on public radio and television to combat racism, anti-Semitism and other forms of discrimination.

PARIS, Dec 15 (AFP) - France on Wednesday unveiled a programme of events at cultural sites and on public radio and television to combat racism, anti-Semitism and other forms of discrimination.

As a part of the "Living Together" initiative, Culture Minister Renaud Donnedieu de Vabres described the 18-month programme to run until winter 2006 as "a concrete, lasting and conscious commitment".

He told reporters it was born from the will to be "militants of tolerance, of peace wherever it is under threat, of respect for everyone". An essential role of culture was to promote better social cohesion, he added.

France's highest administrative court issued a ruling this week banning a Lebanese television station accused of spreading anti-Semitic propaganda for the Muslim militant group Hezbollah.

"This is not a decision by the government, it's a decision of the law of our country," the minister told reporters.

Well known sites such as the Louvre or chateau of Versailles, as well as operas, museums, libraries have been asked to get involved. The Cite des Sciences et de l'Industrie museum is to hold information sessions on racism, sexism and homophobia.

A key event will be the centenary in 2006 of the exoneration of Alfred Dreyfus, a Jewish artillery officer in the French army who was convicted of treason but in fact was innocent.

His conviction rested on false documents and when high-ranking officers realised this, they attempted a cover-up.

The campaign was launched amid a rise in the number of racist and anti-Semitic acts committed across the country.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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