Mayor of Paris to Sue Fox News for Wildly Inaccurate, Insulting Coverage

Europeans are outraged by unsubstantiated claims made by the news network about Sharia law in their countries.

The Mayor of Paris, France is threatening to sue Fox News over its claim that the city contains several “no-go zones” where non-Muslims cannot walk safely and Sharia law is practiced.

Mayor Anne Hidalgo told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour that she is planning a suit against the U.S. News network, which has made this claim in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo shootings. In addition to Fox News, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal has also claimed that “no-go zones” exist throughout western Europe. Hidalgo says that such statements by Fox News had "insulted" her city.

“I think we'll have to go to court, in order to have these words removed," she told Amanpour. "The image of Paris has been prejudiced, and the honor of Paris has been prejudiced."

Spokespersons for Fox News have not responded to Hidalgo’s statements after being asked to respond by other news outlets. In the past several weeks, Fox News has broadcast segments suggesting that portions of Paris and other European cities are run by Islamic laws and that even police officers fear to go into those areas. Fox’s allegations of “no-go” zones have been widely mocked in the media, and have been challenged by European politicians and media outlets. The network’s harshest critics say that Fox has been trying to stir up anti-Muslim sentiment among its viewers by airing these dubious claims.

Particularly fond of the ‘no-go zone’ theory is the show Fox & Friends, who went as far as to display a map of Paris highlighting areas that are allegedly under Islamic rule. The morning talk show also featured a so-called security expert who claimed that Birmingham, England is a "totally Muslim city where non-Muslims don't go in."

Since airing those allegations, some Fox News anchorshave apologized for the segments, saying that some of the neighborhoods in Paris were highlighted incorrectly. One anchor, Julie Banderas issued a blanket apology to "the people of France and England” while “Judge Jeanine” Pirro apologized for the segment she earlier aired that featured terrorism analyst Steve Emerson who claimed that this phenomenon plagued Europe broadly.

Hidalgo's interview will broadcast later this afternoon. 

 

 

Cliff Weathers is a former senior editor at AlterNet and served as a deputy editor at Consumer Reports. Twitter @cliffweathers.

 

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