French Ambassador After Islamist Beheading: “France is a Muslim Country” Responding to the beheading of a school teacher by an Islamist in Paris, French ambassador to Sweden Etienne de Gonneville told broadcaster SVT, “France is a Muslim country.” Yes, really. Samuel Paty was decapitated by an 18-year-old Chechen jihadist in revenge for showing cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad to pupils in a class on free speech. The country responded with mass protest marches in major cities and President Emmanuel Macron vowed to protect freedom of expression in honor of the victim.