Muslim leaders in France, home to Europe's largest Islamic community, called for calm Thursday after an anti-Islam film sparked anti-US violence in North Africa and the Middle East.

"There is a certain agitation (in French mosques) about this affair. I hope there will not be any protests in France," said Abdallah Zekri, the head of an Islamophobia Observatory set up by the country's Muslim Council.

The rector of the Paris Grand Mosque, Dalil Boubakeur, called on Muslims not to rise to "this provocaton knowingly perpetrated against Islam", while the Muslim Council said only "legal and fair means" should be used to defend the religion.

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