The gargoyle on Lyon cathedral
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Lyon cathedral adorned with 'Muslim' gargoyle

A Muslim stonemason in France has been immortalised by having his face carved on a gargoyle on the side of the medieval cathedral in Lyon.

59-year-old master mason Ahmed Benzizine, who is due to retire soon, has spent nearly four decades helping to restore the ancient Roman Catholic cathedral.

Next to it is an inscription in Arabic and French which reads: Allahu Akbar, God is Great.

But a local far-right group has said the carving is an affront to the Catholic Church.

Hugh Schofield reports.

  • 10 Sep 2010