France's top court reinstates ban on comic Dieudonne

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One-man show by comedian accused of anti-Semitism banned at last minute after interior minister wins appeal against earlier legal setback.

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The highest court in France has reinstated a ban on a show by controversial comic Dieudonne M'bala M'bala, just before it was due to open, reports the BBC.

Interior Minister Manuel Valls appealed to the Council of State to intervene after a judge in the city of Nantes overturned the ban.

The comic has seven convictions for anti-Semitic hate speech.

He has already arrived at the theatre in Nantes, where more than 5,000 people were due to see the show.

Police have deployed outside the venue as a precaution.

The judge in Nantes had said he did not regard the show, entitled The Wall, as having "an attack on human dignity as its main object".

But the Council of State upheld the ban on Thursday's performance, the first on a scheduled tour, despite a challenge by the comic's lawyers saying his freedom of expression had been breached.

The president of the World Jewish Congress, Ronald Lauder, had called on France to "confront this preacher of hate head on".

Read more of this report from the BBC.

Read Mediapart's coverage of the story here.

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