Anti-Israel Activist Arrested by French Police After Prank Caller Claims He Killed His Wife
A Jewish anti-Israel activist was arrested by anti-terror police in France early Tuesday morning after a prank caller told officials he killed his wife, Radio France International reported on Wednesday.
Authorities received an anonymous call saying Pierre Stambul, 65, had murdered his wife, and was armed and ready to shoot anyone who approached him. Stambul said the anti-terror unit broke down the door of his home in Marseille and pinned him to the ground, even though he voluntarily identified himself. Stambul said his jaw was injured during the arrest.
“I was in handcuffs for more than an hour, despite the fact that the woman I was supposed to have killed was two meters away from me,” Stambul said.
He was taken to a local police station and held for several hours on suspicion of making the prank call himself, according to Radio France.
The activist said he intends to file a lawsuit against the police.
Stambul is a national committee member of the French Jewish Union for Peace (UJFP). France’s Metro News described the group as a “Jewish organization campaigning for Palestinian rights.”
UJFP operates under the umbrella of European Jews for a Just Peace (EJJP), a federation of Jewish groups in 10 European countries that promote views highly critical of Israel. The organization calls for the recognition of a Palestinian state and for “strong measures against Israel until it ends the occupation of Palestinian land.”
In the EJJP mission statement, the federation endorses the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement as a “non-violent means to promote the application of international law and demand accountability.” The statement also says, “As a federation of Jewish organizations, we reject the notion that the state of Israel represents all Jews around the world. It does not speak in our name.”
Stambul claimed that he is the third victim so far of a prank similar to the one he faced, including one against another UJFP activist. He believes the perpetrator was a “Zionist hacker” named Grégory Chelli, who is also known as Ulcan. Police chief Laurent Nunez said the prank resembles previous activity by the Israel-based hacker but Ulcan denied responsibility for the attack.
Stambul alleged that the recent prank calls are linked to Israeli reactions to the BDS movement, Radio France said.