The Place de la République has become the centre of tributes for victims of last week’s terror attacks in Paris, it is also becoming the centre for hope.
One Muslim man took to the square with the aim of showing the world France may be hurting, but it is not divided.
Blindfolded he lay a sign on the ground that read:
I’m Muslim, but I’m told that I’m a terrorist. I trust you, do you trust me? If yes, hug me.”
A great mass of strangers soon gathered and waited their turn to give the unnamed man a hug, with many being moved to tears.
Following the successful demonstration he said:
I would like to thank every one of you for giving me a hug. I did this to send a message to everyone.Advertisement
I am Muslim, but that doesn’t make me a terrorist. I never killed anybody. I can even tell you that last Friday was my birthday, but I didn’t go out.
I deeply feel for all the victims’ families. I want to tell you that ‘Muslim’ doesn’t necessarily mean ‘terrorist’.
A terrorist is a terrorist, someone willing to kill another human being over nothing. A Muslim would never do that. Our religion forbids it.”Advertisement
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The scenes are deeply moving and the guy deserves praise for putting himself out there. It goes to show that unity is one of the strongest weapons we have against terror.