French Teen Receives Wave of Death Threats After Criticising Islam

Mila has been living in semi-seclusion since videos of her criticising Islam went viral in France - Image Source: Twitter

THE CASE of a French teen who received a wave of serious death threats after criticising Islam on social media has reignited free speech debates in the country.

Prosecutors say that five men have been arrested across France for sending serious death threats to Mila – a 17-year-old who received a wave of abuse after videos of her criticising Islam went viral on social media.

Known only by her first name in France, Mila was forced to move school last year when an Instagram she posted that was critical of Islam went viral. According to her lawyers, at one point the teen was receiving over 30 hate messages per minute.

Last November she posted another video on the TikTok platform, igniting a new wave of online threats. Among original remarks, she described Islam as a “religion of hate” – though her lawyers stress that she was criticising the religion itself and not its followers.

According to Le Figaro, Mila has received 50,000 hate messages as of January and has been forced to live in a state of semi-seclusion due to fears for her safety. Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin announced via Twitter that five people had been arrested across France for making death threats, and he added that “in total, 13 individuals have been arrested as part of this case since February 2020”.

The case has become a focal point in France’s complex debate regarding freedom of speech and religion – which was previously highlighted by the brutal murder of Paris teacher Samuel Paty after he showed cartoons of the prophet Muhammad in a high school classroom.

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Written by

Oisin Sweeney

Oisin is an Irish writer based in Seville, the sunny capital of Andalucia. After starting his working life as a bookseller, he moved into journalism and cut his teeth as a reporter at one of Ireland's biggest news websites. Since joining Euro Weekly News in November, he has enjoyed covering the latest stories from Seville, Spain and further afield - with special interests in crime, cybersecurity, and European politics. Anyone who can pronounce his name first try gets a free cerveza...


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