World

Controversial French comic on trial for inciting racial hatred tells court he seeks peace

  • French comedian Dieudonne M'Bala M'Bala arrives at the Paris court house, France, to attend his trial,  Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2015. Controversial French comic Dieudonne goes on trial accused of inciting racial hatred by insulting a Jewish journalist with comments about the gas chambers. The trial comes as the French government is cracking down on hate speech and anti-Semitism after deadly terrorist attacks on a kosher market and newspaper Charlie Hebdo. (AP Photo/Zacharie Scheurer)

    French comedian Dieudonne M'Bala M'Bala arrives at the Paris court house, France, to attend his trial, Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2015. Controversial French comic Dieudonne goes on trial accused of inciting racial hatred by insulting a Jewish journalist with comments about the gas chambers. The trial comes as the French government is cracking down on hate speech and anti-Semitism after deadly terrorist attacks on a kosher market and newspaper Charlie Hebdo. (AP Photo/Zacharie Scheurer)  (The Associated Press)

  • French comic Dieudonne M'Bala M'Bala arrives at the Paris court house, France, to attend his trial,  Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2015. Controversial French comic Dieudonne goes on trial accused of inciting racial hatred by insulting a Jewish journalist with comments about the gas chambers. The trial comes as the French government is cracking down on hate speech and anti-Semitism after deadly terrorist attacks on a kosher market and newspaper Charlie Hebdo. (AP Photo/Zacharie Scheurer)

    French comic Dieudonne M'Bala M'Bala arrives at the Paris court house, France, to attend his trial, Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2015. Controversial French comic Dieudonne goes on trial accused of inciting racial hatred by insulting a Jewish journalist with comments about the gas chambers. The trial comes as the French government is cracking down on hate speech and anti-Semitism after deadly terrorist attacks on a kosher market and newspaper Charlie Hebdo. (AP Photo/Zacharie Scheurer)  (The Associated Press)

  • French comedian Dieudonne M'Bala M'Bala arrives at the Paris court house, France, to attend his trial,  Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2015. Controversial French comic Dieudonne goes on trial accused of inciting racial hatred by insulting a Jewish journalist with comments about the gas chambers. The trial comes as the French government is cracking down on hate speech and anti-Semitism after deadly terrorist attacks on a kosher market and newspaper Charlie Hebdo. (AP Photo/Zacharie Scheurer)

    French comedian Dieudonne M'Bala M'Bala arrives at the Paris court house, France, to attend his trial, Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2015. Controversial French comic Dieudonne goes on trial accused of inciting racial hatred by insulting a Jewish journalist with comments about the gas chambers. The trial comes as the French government is cracking down on hate speech and anti-Semitism after deadly terrorist attacks on a kosher market and newspaper Charlie Hebdo. (AP Photo/Zacharie Scheurer)  (The Associated Press)

Controversial French comic Dieudonne M'Bala M'Bala has told a court he wants "to make peace" with critics who have accused the 12-times convicted performer of anti-Semitism and inciting racial hatred.

Dieudonne is being prosecuted for inciting racial hatred for comments he made during a 2013 performance in 2013 and on a video. The 48-year-old could be fined 30,000 euros ($34,000) if found guilty. A ruling is expected March 19.

He faces a separate hearing next week over a Facebook post seen as praising one of the attackers in this month's Paris terror attacks.

Last year French authorities banned several of Dieudonne's performances, in which he made light of the Holocaust and popularized a gesture some describe as an inverted Nazi salute.

In court Wednesday Dieudonne said "I'm not an anti-Semite."