Page last updated at 10:36 GMT, Friday, 8 January 2010

France expels 'dangerous imam' for inciting violence

Brice Hortefeux, file pic from December 2009
Brice Hortefeux described Ali Ibrahim el-Soudany as a 'dangerous individual'

France has deported a Muslim preacher to Egypt for making public speeches inciting violence against the West.

Announcing the move, Interior Minister Brice Hortefeux described Ali Ibrahim el-Soudany as a "dangerous individual".

Mr Soudany, who had for months been preaching at a mosque near Paris, was expelled on Thursday, officials said.

Mr Hortefeux said the Egyptian citizen had been "calling for a fight against the West, spurning the values of our society and inciting violence".

Since 2001, 129 radical Muslims - including 29 imams - had been expelled from France, said an interior ministry statement.

There are an estimated five million Muslims living in France - western Europe's largest Muslim population.

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