Charlie Hebdo staff try in vain to stifle laughter as pigeon craps on Francois Hollande
France's President Francois Hollande and his companion Valerie Trierweiller (R) arrive at Cayenne airport, in the French overseas territory of Guiana on Dec. 13, 2013 (AFP)

Amid the tears, the sorrow and the defiance of the unity march in Paris on Sunday, there was nonetheless at least one moment that managed to raise a smile.

While cameras focused on the moment that the president of the republic, François Hollande, embraced Patrick Pelloux, the doctor and columnist at Charlie Hebdo who was one of the first to the scene after the attack, they also captured some unexpected footage.

As Hollande bends to take Pelloux in his arms, a bird deficates on the shoulder part of the president’s right sleeve - causing staff from the satirical magazine to try and hide their uncontrollable laughter.

For the French public, who have had little to laugh about in recent days, it was a scatological joke worthy of the magazine itself, with some calling it the best news to come out of the Charlie Hebdo affair.

The cartoonist, Luz, who was caught on video cracking up as Hollande continues to embrace Pelloux, applauded the president’s comic timing.

“Hollande could join Charlie, because, despite himself, he made the entire team laugh in five seconds,” Luz told Les Inrockuptibles magazine. The cartoonist, who was only not present when the gunmen struck the Charlie Hebdo editorial meeting because he was late, later added on France Inter: “François Hollande can come to the office whenever he wants. The pigeon too.” © Guardian News and Media 2015

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