French Jews Commemorate Fifth Anniversary of Hyper Cacher Murders

While mourning victims, French Jewish leader condemned killer of Jewish woman's escape from justice

JTA
Cnaan Liphshiz
French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner and Justice Minister Nicole Beloubet light a candle next to CRIF President Francis Kalifat (L), outside the Hyper Cacher kosher supermarket in Paris, France, January 9, 2020.
French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner and Justice Minister Nicole Beloubet light a candle next to CRIF President Francis Kalifat (L), outside the Hyper Cacher kosher supermarket in Paris, FrancCredit: AFP
JTA
Cnaan Liphshiz

Several hundred people attended a ceremony commemorating the fifth anniversary of the murder of four Jews at a Paris kosher supermarket by a jihadist.

At the event Thursday outside HyperCacher in the Porte de Vincennes area in eastern Paris, candles were lit for each victim and the crowd sang the French national anthem. It was attended by Interior Minister Cristophe Castaner.

Francis Kalifat, the president of the CRIF umbrella group of French Jewish communities, said that the memory of the four victims will “forever be treasured” by French Jewry.

Kalifat devoted a significant part of his speech to criticizing the handling of another killing from 2017, in which a Muslim man beat his Jewish neighbor, Sarah Halimi, and threw her to her death from the third-story window of her apartment. In November, an appeals court ruled that the killer was found unfit to stand trial because he was high on marijuana.

“The work of commemorating her cannot properly take place,” Kalifat said, until her killer is “brought to justice.”

“This ruling is a stain on our society because it prevents the wounds from healing,” he added.

The 2015 attack at Hyper Cacher was one of the most traumatic events to befall the French Jewish community in recent years. Four people died in the attack — Philippe Braham, Yohan Cohen, Yoav Hattab and Francois-Michel Saada — which came in the wake of a shooting at the Charlie Hebdo satirical magazine, which killed 12 people and injured 11 others.

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