Zineb El Rhazoui  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Zineb El Rhazoui (born 1982) is a Moroccan-born French journalist. She is a columnist for Paris-based satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo. She was in Morocco during the Charlie Hebdo massacre on 7 January 2015.

She is the magazine's religion expert and a passionate critic of Islam. Since the killings, she has become a prominent secularist and human rights campaigner, speaking publicly around the world about Islam and free speech.

Rhazoui has criticized the term "Islamophobia" and says it first appeared in Iran "a few years ago, as a way of silencing critics of that country's government", although the word is attested in French as early as 1910 in Alain Quellien's book, La Politique musulmane dans l’Afrique occidentale française ("Il y a toujours eu, et il y a encore un préjugé contre l'islam répandu chez les peuples de civilisation occidentale et chrétienne"). According to sociologists Abdellali Hajjat and Marwan Mohammed, the term does not even exist in Persian.

One of the crimes for which she was arrested was a protest picnic in 2009, which involved her eating lunch in a public park during Ramadan.

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