French minister condemns vandalizing of Jewish memorial

FILE - In this July 13 2009 file photo, memonstrators hold photographs of Ilan Halimi at the end of the two-month trial of a Paris gang who kidnapped, tortured and killed Halimi, a young French Jew in 2006. France's interior minister Gerard Collomb has condemned Thursday Nov. 2 2017 the desecration of a prominent Jewish grave plaque near Paris by unknown vandals as "cowardly and odious." The plaque in homage to Halimi, was pulled off, thrown on the ground and covered with anti-Semitic writing. (AP Photo/Jacques Brinon, File)

PARIS - France's interior minister has condemned the desecration of a prominent Jewish memorial plaque near Paris by unknown vandals as "cowardly and odious."

Gerard Collomb said the plaque in homage to Ilan Halimi, a French Jew murdered in 2006, was pulled off, thrown on the ground and covered with anti-Semitic writing.

Collomb noted that the plaque had previously been vandalized in 2015.

France's leading Jewish group, CRIF, said that this latest event highlights the country's persistent anti-Semitism.

Halimi was held and tortured for three weeks before being murdered in a suburb of Paris by a French criminal gang.


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