“This trial must be just and exemplary, with no ambiguity regarding the aggravating circumstances of antisemitic hate... Our Centre will be monitoring the proceedings.”

Paris, 14 July 2020

In a letter to French Minister of Justice Éric Dupont-Moretti, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels, expressed satisfaction that “the perpetrators of the stabbing and arson of child Holocaust survivor, Mireille Knoll, will be judged for their antisemitic hate crime and that her family, we hope, will be able to find closure.”

Congratulating Dupont-Moretti for his appointment as Minister of Justice, Samuels noted his regular contact with his predecessor, Nicole Belloubet, “on a number of issues related to the rise of antisemitism, extremism and Jihadism in France... and especially on the cases of Sarah Halimi and Mireille Knoll, both brutally murdered only because they were Jewish.”

Now the Mireille Knoll case is to go to trial, “this is unfortunately still not the case for the horrific murder of Sarah Halimi, whose slaughterer is presently considered by the court as not criminally responsible” … “We have repeated on many occasions that alcohol, cannabis and psychiatry must not be an excuse for the French judiciary for perpetrators of murder based on religious, ethnic or gender hatred and violence,” argued the Centre.

Samuels stressed, “that this trial must be just and exemplary, with no ambiguity regarding the aggravating circumstances of antisemitic hate.”

The letter reiterated that, “prolonged and indecisive procedures do not render service to justice, as in the case of the 1980 Copernic synagogue bombing suspect, Hassan Diab, who was finally extradited from Canada in 2014 and then – pending appeal, somehow managed to use a 2-day window of opportunity to escape back to Ottawa in 2018.”

“The families of Mireille Knoll, Sarah Halimi, the four killed and 46 wounded in rue Copernic, the Hyper Cacher supermarket massacre, the Toulouse Jewish school and other victims of antisemitic terror in France... all deserve closure. Our Centre will be monitoring the proceedings... In the footsteps of Simon Wiesenthal, ‘We will Never Forget!’”, concluded Samuels.