Thursday 14 November 2019

Gunman who killed four hostages at Paris supermarket buried

Amedy Coulibaly, shot dead in the siege
Amedy Coulibaly, shot dead in the siege

Press Association

Amedy Coulibaly, who killed four hostages at a kosher supermarket and policewoman in Paris earlier this month, has been buried in a suburban cemetery, officials said.

The burial came after a debate over how to handle the bodies of Coulibaly and two other gunmen behind France's worst terrorist attack in decades. All three were killed by police.

Officials in some towns had objected to burying the gunmen, fearing the grave sites could become extremist shrines.

Paris officials said Coulibaly was buried in the Muslim section of the cemetery in Thiais, south of Paris, with a few family members present. No markings indicate his grave.

Brothers Cherif and Said Kouachi, who killed 12 people at the Charlie Hebdo newspaper, were buried secretly in unmarked graves in towns outside of Paris last weekend.

Read more: Four men charged in connection with Paris attacks

Hayat Boumedienne, the partner of Amedy Coulibaly, who is on the run
Hayat Boumedienne, the partner of Amedy Coulibaly, who is on the run

The burial took place as a leading Muslim group said that at least as many anti-Muslim acts have taken place in France since the terror attacks this month as for all of last year.

The French Council for the Muslim Religion said 128 anti-Muslim actions or threats were reported from January 7-20 - a number that does not include the densely populated Paris region. That is compared to 133 in all of France, including Paris, in 2014.

Three Islamic extremist gunmen carried out the attacks, which began on January 7 with the killing of 12 people at the offices of satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo, which lampooned religion and had been threatened repeatedly after publishing caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed.

Since then, mosques have suffered a grenade attack, shots and repeated vandalism, and stores owned by Muslims have been burned.

Read more: Paris shop hero honoured by France

At least one person was assaulted and taken to hospital, said Abdallah Zekri, of the National Observatory Against Islamophobia, which worked with the group to produce the total.

Mr Zekri said the report only included those attacks that were reported to police.

The French government last week deployed security forces to protect mosques and synagogues, as well as other places deemed in danger since the terror attacks that left 20 people dead, including three gunmen killed in stand-offs with police.

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