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Macron’s War on Islamists Comes Up Against Erdogan’s Soft Power

The French government is getting more concerned about Turkey’s growing influence in the country.

With France reeling from a series of  gruesome attacks by jihadists in recent weeks, President Emmanuel Macron has spoken of “a battle” to protect the country’s secularism.

With France reeling from a series of gruesome attacks by jihadists in recent weeks, President Emmanuel Macron has spoken of “a battle” to protect the country’s secularism.

Photographer: Kiran Ridley/Getty Images

On an industrial estate in the French city of Strasbourg a few miles from the European Parliament, a grand plan to build the continent’s largest mosque is slowly taking shape.

The Turkish organization behind the 30 million-euro ($36 million) project says the Eyyub Sultan complex, replete with a dozen domes and minarets and surrounded by conference halls, restaurants and stores, will be open to all and a pillar of integration and multiculturalism. Yet what’s concerning French authorities is how it might ultimately be used.