France has?not done enough to "fully" include Muslims: ambassador to Australia

2015-11-17 00:44:33 GMT2015-11-17 08:44:33(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

CANBERRA, Nov. 17 (Xinhua) -- The French ambassador to Australia believes his homeland hasn't done enough to create an inclusive environment for Muslim migrants, and should take a cue from Australia's immigration policy in future.

Christophe Lecourtier, who was born and raised in Paris, said the French needed to make Muslims feel welcome and wanted in their new home, in light of the Islamic State (IS)-claimed Paris terror attacks that have resulted in the deaths of at least 132 people.

"Of course 96, 97, 98 percent (of Muslim migrants) are good people and probably we've not done enough in the past 20 years to fully bring them into the nation," Lecourtier said on an Australian Broadcast Corporation (ABC) panel show late Monday night.

Lecourtier, who has been in the role since last year, went on to tell the 1,200-strong studio audience that the attack meant "war" on Western society's democratic ideals, common ground between Australia and France.

"It's a war because the values that we share, the values that we have been sharing with Australia probably since the First World War are at stake," he said.

"(The shared values mean) that we want to be able to go out with anybody, to dress as we want, to be in love with any people that we want.

"That's the kind of things these people do not accept, and until the very last moment you can be sure that France will resist that, and we shall never retreat one millimeter from our values."

On the program, Australia's Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science Christopher Pyne also said "moderate Muslims" need to be embraced by all countries as they "have as much at stake as we do in defeating the extremists."

Earlier on Monday, the French military launched a massive airstrike on IS forces with 20 bombs dropped on the Syrian city of Raqqa -- an IS stronghold -- reportedly destroying a command post, recruitment center, training camp and munitions facility.

Lecourtier believed similar attacks may be carried out for some time.

"We had to retaliate and probably this will happen again in the coming times," he said.

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