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Debate Promoted by Folha Discusses Attack on French Newspaper 'Charlie Hebdo'

03/06/2015 - 13h15

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FROM SÃO PAULO

"You cannot confuse this small minority with Muslims in general. But this small minority makes a lot of noise".

The phrase said by *Folha*'s cartoonist Caco Gallardo can be taken as the conclusion of the debate about the radical Islamic terrorist attack against the headquarters of French satirical weekly "Charlie Hebdo" in Paris.

Apart from Galhardo, the meeting promoted by Folha brought together sociologist and Folha columnist Demetrius Magnoli and Cleusa Turra, Folha's magazines director, to discuss the January 7 attack that left 12 dead. The talk was mediated by special reporter Sylvia Colombo.

Gallardo said Charlie Hebdo's "libertarian spirit" is "beautiful". But he worries about the consequences of the attack.

Beyond the tragedy of losing human lives, he remembered that, shortly after the attack, an event in Denmark that intended to discuss press freedom was cancelled after a terrorist attack that left one dead. That could be a sign that the extremists had reached their goal.

Magnoli says that after the attack European governments adjusted their speeches to escape the idea of "clash of civilizations".

He recalled statements made by French Prime Minister Manuel Valls saying that "France is at war against terrorism and jihadism, and not against Islam and Muslims".

According to the sociologist, the attack meant to people a break in the "cohabitation agreement" expected by multiculturalism.

"Saying 'Je suis Charlie' [I am Charlie], I'm not saying I agree with the newspaper, but, yes, people have the right to give their opinion", he said.

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