WATCH: Family of Female Jewish Charlie Hebdo Victim Speaks Out

The cousin of Elsa Cayat speaks out, 'They spared all of the women, and she was the only one killed. And she was the only one Jewish.'

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Erin Burnett interviews Sophie Bramly
Erin Burnett interviews Sophie BramlyCredit: Screen grab

CNN Transcript:

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BURNETT: All right. Seth Jones, thank you very much.

And next, the only woman killed in the attack on the "Charlie Hebdo" offices. Why was Elsa Cayat targeted for death? Her cousin is OUTFRONT tonight.

And we'll have the very latest on the manhunt for the lone surviving suspect in the deadly attacks.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK) BURNETT: Breaking news, we have reports that the biggest synagogue in Paris is closed tonight. That is a very incredible statement because it is the first time the synagogue was closed since World War II. The reason is far of another terror attack after a kosher supermarket was the scene of a hostage scene today with four hostages murdered inside. That brings the number of people killed in terror attacks in France this week to 17.

And the terror all began here, at "Charlie Hebdo" magazine when two terrorists attacked journalists, journalists, during their weekly editorial meeting. Among the victims, Elsa Cayat, the only one killed in that attack. She was a psychoanalyst. She wrote a column in the magazine, and she was there for that meeting this week.

Joining me now is Elsa's cousin, Sophie Bramly.

And, Sophie, I appreciate your taking the time being with us so late on this Friday night on such a horrific week for you and your family. I know you're trying to come to grips and understand what happened. As we all are trying to understand this horrific act. We know the killers came into "Charlie Hebdo", called out the names of some of the men they killed.

Do you think your cousin was among those specifically targeted?

SOPHIE BRAMLY, COUSIN WAS ONLY WOMAN KILLED IN CHARLIE HEBDO ATTACK: Yes, I do think so. Though, obviously, I can't know for sure. But that is the feeling I have. They spared all of the women, and she was the only one killed. And she was the only one Jewish.

And also when I talked to her brother last night, he was telling me she had been getting phone calls for a while, anonymous phone calls but the calls were saying, basically, dirty Jew. You should stop working for "Charlie Hebdo" otherwise we're going to kill you.

So, if you put two and two together, it seems like, yes, she was definitely killed because she was Jewish and that to me make it even worse, because, you know, it brings back ugly memories and because the press hasn't really talked about it that way here. It was only about freedom of speech that was attacked and my feeling was that religion was there, too.

And today, unfortunately, it seemed to prove that I wasn't totally wrong.

BURNETT: Well, yes, as you said because they targeted the kosher supermarket. And the prime minister of Israel, I know speaking to the president of France, they are trying to beef up security at Jewish targets, so it is a significant point you raised. And it is also tragic. She was the only woman killed.

As you know, according to "The New York Times", the female cartoonist who was downstairs, they forced her to open the doors to the building. They spared her. A freelance journalist with a gun pointed to her head and they said, no, we don't shoot women. But then one of the journalists in the meeting said the gunman ambushed and said they wouldn't kill women at all. But, of course, your cousin -- your cousin was brutally murdered.

And I know you believe that it could have been because she was Jewish. Was she afraid? I mean, you talk about her getting these calls? Was she nervous or afraid at all to go to work, feeling she was a target?

BRAMLY: She was an incredible woman. She was a brilliant psychoanalyst and she was doing this only by passion, because she cared about the team doing "Charlie Hebdo" and because she cared about the ideas they had. And she was over the top for everything. I mean, nothing was never enough, and then she was a workaholic. As I said, she was an incredibly passionate woman. So, I think she did it because she thought her own freedom and her passion went above the best, basically.

BURNETT: Because she believed in her cause. And I know, Sophie, she was a columnist, as you say, workaholic and passionate about her job, but she was a mother too, and I know her daughter must be missing her so dearly and her whole family.

Thank you so much for being with us.




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