'Understand Muslims could be shocked by caricatures'

French President Emmanuel Macron says understands Muslims could be 'shocked' by Mohammed caricatures

French President Emmanuel Macron. Credit: AFP File photo

French President Emmanuel Macron expressed understanding that cartoons of the prophet Mohammed could shock Muslims, but said that this could never be used to justify violence, in an interview with Al-Jazeera to be broadcast in full on Saturday.

"I can understand that people could be shocked by the caricatures, but I will never accept that violence can be justified," he told the Qatar-based channel in the wake of the killing of three people inside a Nice church by a suspected Islamist radical.

"I consider it our duty to protect our freedoms and our rights," he added in an extract of the interview to be broadcast from 1600 GMT.