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May 2, 2016 / 24 Nisan, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘Manuel Valls’

Nearly 1,000 French Jews Await Hollande Address on Anti-Semitism

Monday, March 7th, 2016

A crowd of nearly 1,000 is slated to attend the largest “Republican” Jewish event in France Monday night, where President Francois Hollande is to deliver remarks on anti-Semitism and French Jewry.

The country’s Prime Minister Manuel Valls and top government officials will also attend the 31st annual dinner of CRIF (Representative Council of Jewish Institutions in France).

At least 800 people have reserved seats for the dinner, which takes place every year and is considered the event of the season.

Leaders of the French Council of the Muslim Faith (CFCM) will also attend the event, which they shunned last year. “With the new head of CFCM Anwar Kbibech, we really feel things have changed,” CRIF President Roger Cukierman,79, told the European Jewish Press.

He noted that the gathering is a forum “where we can express our feelings and concerns.” As in the past, the rising level of anti-Semitism in France will be a main topic of discussion.

“Anti-Semitic acts continue, the 2015 figures are virtually at the same level as in 2014,” said Cukierman, who ends his third mandate in May.

This will be the 79-year-old leader’s last dinner as head of the CRIF.

“Once again, Jews, who represent less than 1% of the total population, are targets of40% of racist acts committed in France and 49% of racist violence to people,” the CRIF said in its annual report. Figures show there were 808 incidents in 2015, as compared with 851 incidents in 2014, according to the Security Department of the Jewish Community (SPCJ).

France is home to the world’s third largest Jewish community, with a population between 500,000 to 600,000 Jews.

In 2015, a record 7,900 French Jews emigrated to Israel following vicious anti-Semitic terrorist attacks in the country despite the Paris government’s 100-million euro plan to strengthen protection around 700 synagogues, schools and community centers.

Hana Levi Julian

Teen Stabbed Jewish Teacher in France ‘For ISIS’

Tuesday, January 12th, 2016

The teen terrorist who stabbed a Jewish teacher in France Monday told police he was “acting for ‘Da’esh’ (ISIS),” French prosecutor Brice Robin told international news reporters.

The attacker, who turns 16 next week, was an ethnic Kurd from Turkey who appeared not to be aware that Da’esh is no friend to the Kurds in Turkey and Syria. The two sides are fierce enemies and constantly fight deadly battles.

The suspect “has the profile of someone who was radicalized on the Internet,” said Robin at an afternoon news briefing. He is charged with “attempted murder on grounds of religion” and “defense of terrorism.” The teen terrorist stabbed the 35-year-old teacher outside a synagogue in the southern French city of Marseille as he was heading to work at the nearby Franco-Hebraic Institute.

The attack took place in the ninth arrondissement district, a well-known neighborhood that is highly populated with hareidi Jews.

The victim was stabbed with a machete in the shoulder from behind, and then chased by his attacker until apparently both of them fell. The teacher fought off the terrorist, using his arms and legs in addition to the religious text he was carrying, but was stabbed in the hand.

The attacker then fled. He was caught by the neighborhood Anti-Crime Brigade about ten minutes later.

“It seemed clear he does not have a full grasp of the fundamentals of Islam,” Robin told journalists at an afternoon news conference. He clearly understood the goals of Da’esh, however: the young terrorist-in-training told investigators that he would arm himself and kill police as soon as he is released.

Robin added that the young terrorist’s family was unaware of their son’s radicalization and believed he was a “good student.”

As for his attack on a Jewish teacher, however, Robin acknowledged, “It appears there was a form of premeditation,” with intent to kill his victim due to his faith.

French Prime Minister Manuel Valls was far more blunt, and addressed the obvious anti-Semitism with considerable vigor. In a tweet posted to the Twitter social network, Valls wrote: “The anti-Semitic aggression against a teacher in Marseille is revolting.”

French President Francois Hollande said authorities will fight “with the greatest firmness against anti-Semitism and racism.” He called the attack “unspeakable and unjustifiable.”

Hana Levi Julian

Rabbis Honor French PM in Fight Against Anti-Semitism

Tuesday, May 12th, 2015

European rabbis honored the prime minister of France on Tuesday for his role in fighting anti-Semitism in the country.

Prime Minister Manuel Valls received the Lord Jakobovits Prize at the annual Conference of European Rabbis, held in Toulouse.

Both Chief Rabbis of Israel attended the gathering, as did others from nations across the European continent.

Conference organizers chose Toulouse as the venue for the gathering in order “to commemorate the attacks” where a rabbi and three Jewish children were murdered at a Jewish day school by a radical Islamist terrorist in 2012.

Valls was chosen to receive the award shortly after he announced a 600-million Euro nationwide drive to fight the rising incidence of anti-Semitic attacks in France.

Violent anti-Semitic attacks have skyrocketed by 40 percent worldwide during the past 18 months — but in France alone, 164 such incidents were recorded in 2014, in contrast to 141 in 2013.

Rabbi Pinchas Goldschmidt, president of the Conference of European Rabbis, said the decision to honor Valls was made after his “decisive” action to “protect the Jews of France from the mobs who were about to make a pogrom against our people and our synagogues.”

Goldschmidt told more than 200 rabbis at the annual event, “There are some voices asking if there is a future for the Jewish people in Europe.

“I say this question can only be answered by the European governments themselves – and if that answer is to be a positive answer, then they must follow the example of Prime Minister Valls.”

Hana Levi Julian

French Jewish Leader Indicted for Calling Dieudonne ‘Professional Anti-Semite’

Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014

Roger Cukierman, president of France’s largest Jewish group, was indicted for supposedly defaming the comedian Dieudonne M’bala M’bala a “professional anti-Semite.”

Cukierman, who heads the CRIF umbrella of French Jewish communities and organizations, announced the indictment on Monday in a video that appeared on the CRIF website.

“So I am being indicted for having stated on Europe 1 that Dieudonne is a professional anti-Semite. Isn’t that funny? For once, Dieudonne is actually comical,” Cukierman said.

Dieudonne has 10 convictions for inciting racial hatred against Jews, according to CRIF. He also invented the quenelle salute, which French Prime Minister Manuel Valls said was an inverted Nazi gesture of anti-Semitic hate, and the term “shoananas,” a mashup of the Hebrew word for the Holocaust and the French word for pineapple, which is used to suggest the genocide never happened without explicitly violating France’s laws against doing so.

Earlier this year, Valls, then interior minister, advised mayors to ban Dieudonne’s shows, leading to the show’s cancellation and replacement with another routine which featured less anti-Semitic material.

Indictments are “quasi-automatic” in France when police receive complaints of defamation, according to the L’Express news website.

Responding to the indictment, the National Bureau for Vigilance against Vigilance, or BNVCA, extended its support for Cukierman.

“No one in France knows anti-Semitism better than Roger Cukierman, who survived the Holocaust at the age of nine because nuns hid him while his family was deported to Auschwitz and gassed there,” the Drancy-based watchdog wrote in a statement Tuesday.

Dieudonne and the far-right Holocaust denier Alain Soral recently decided to form a political party, the news site Mediapart.fe reported Tuesday.

Last week, Dieudonne was indicted for fraud, money laundering and abuse of public funds, Le Monde reported. Researchers believe Dieudonne, who declared he had no money to pay fines he received for his hate speech, transferred more than $500,000 to Cameroon while he declared himself to be insolvent.

JTA

Antisemitic French Comic Drops Tour

Sunday, January 12th, 2014

Amid an investigation into his finances and bans on his shows because of anti-Semitic content, the French comedian Dieudonne M’bala M’bala said he was abandoning his nationwide tour.

Dieudonne made the announcement Saturday at a news conference in which he appeared dressed in traditional West African garb — his mother was born in Cameroon.

“Today, a page is turned and I am switching to other things,” the comedian said in reference to his new show, “The Wall,” which he was supposed to take on tour beginning Jan. 9 but ground to a halt after France’s highest court upheld a ban on the show that several municipalities have imposed.

His announcement also follows reports that French authorities suspect that he is hiding revenues to avoid paying $89,000 in fines that have been imposed on him for inciting racial hatred against Jews — an offense for which he has been convicted seven times.

Legally speaking, Dieudonne is penniless and unable to pay the debts, yet his shows at the Main D’Or theatre in Paris are sold out, RTL reported.

French authorities reportedly suspect that he colluded with associates to give the impression of bankruptcy. In addition, French Interior Minister Manuel Valls was filmed saying on Jan. 7 that Dieudonne “was financed by Iran, after all.”

Dieudonne told reporters, “As we are living in a state with laws, of course one needs to conform to the law.” He spoke in a serious tone and without the ironic pomp and mumblings that have become his trademark in past appearances and false expressions of regret for spreading anti-Semitic ideas.

“In my work as a humorist, I have tried to push the boundaries of the public debate and of laughter, and the judiciary has expressed its position on this,” he said in reference to a ruling on Jan. 9 by France’s highest court that banned him from performing in the western city of Nantes. “I have angered many people and I will continue to do so, through laughter.”

Despite his seven convictions for inciting racial hatred against Jews, Dieudonne said, “Clearly, I am not a Nazi, I’m not an anti-Semite.”

JTA

Star French Athlete Probed for Antisemitic Gesture

Sunday, December 29th, 2013

A star athlete from France is facing disciplinary action for showing support for an antisemitic comedian whose shows may soon be banned by the French government.

Britain’s Football Association said Saturday it was considering punishing Nicolas Anelka, a French national playing for the West Bromwich Albion soccer team, for performing, during a match, the quenelle – a quasi-Nazi salute which representatives of France’s Jewish community have termed antisemitic.

Following an outcry, the 34-year-old athlete said on Twitter: “This gesture was just a special dedication to my comedian friend Dieudonne,” a reference to the comedian who invented and is promoting the gesture, which is believed to both mock and circumvent France’s laws against displaying Nazi symbols with intention of causing offense.

But a spokesman for the association told the British tabloid The Daily Mirror that the organization would be launching a probe into the actions of Anelka, who was filmed placing his outstretched left palm on his right shoulder after striking the first of two goals during the match.

The decision came after the French Sports Minister Valerie Fourneyron called Anelka’s gesture “a shocking provocation, disgusting.” She added: “There’s no place for anti-Semitism and incitement to hatred on the football field.”

Moshe Kantor, president of the European Jewish Congress, said in a statement: “We expect that the English Premier League officials as well as the police will give Anelka the appropriate punishment.”

The discussion about Anelka comes one day after France’s interior minister, Manuel Valls, declared that his ministry would look into banning all public performances by Dieudonne, the inventor of the quenelle.

“Despite his conviction for defamation, causing offense and inciting racial hatred and discrimination, Dieudonne M’bala M’bala doesn’t seem to recognize any limits any more,” Minister Manuel Valls said in a statement Friday announcing the legal review aimed at banning his public appearances.

On Saturday, some 200 of Dieudonne’s supporters protested against Valls’ plans, according to the news site JSSnews.com.

Dieudonne, who also invented the word “Shoananas” – a code for suggesting the Holocaust is a myth without breaking France’s laws against denying the genocide, is scheduled to perform in Bordeaux on Jan. 26.

Dieudonne has been convicted several times for inciting racial hatred against Jews in films, shows and articles.

JTA

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/star-french-athlete-probed-for-antisemitic-gesture/2013/12/29/

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