Son of Murdered French Holocaust Survivor Mireille Knoll Blasts French Judiciary for ‘Unconscionable Treatment’ of Jews
The eldest son of the Holocaust survivor who was brutally murdered during an antisemitic assault in her Paris apartment castigated France’s judiciary for its alleged indifference to violence against Jews in an emotional speech in the French capital this past weekend.
Allan Knoll — whose 85-year-old mother, Holocaust survivor Mireille Knoll, was stabbed and then burned to death in March 2018 by two intruders who believed that because she was Jewish, she would be hiding large amounts of cash — addressed a small rally on Sunday in the Place de la Republique in Paris.
The demonstration was organized by “The Group Against Silence,” a collective of activists that is campaigning for justice in the case of Sarah Halimi — a 65-year-old Jewish widow who was slain in her Paris apartment by an antisemitic assailant eleven months before Mireille Knoll suffered a similar fate.
But while Knoll’s accused killers will face trial, the individual charged with Halimi’s murder — 29-year-old Kobili Traore — was excused from a criminal trial last December after a court in Paris deemed that his ingestion of cannabis on the night of the killing had rendered him temporarily insane.
Allan Knoll told the rally that he was in attendance in memory of his own mother, as well as Sarah Halimi and the four Jewish victims of the January 2015 terrorist attack on a kosher supermarket in eastern Paris.
“The way that the judicial system has treated the Jewish community is unconscionable,” he stated. “The decision reached by the judge [in the Halimi case] was shameful.”
Continued Knoll: “The fact that someone takes a small amount of drugs doesn’t mean he loses possession of his faculties. The murder of Sarah Halimi was a deliberate act and it cannot go unpunished.”
Knoll argued that a reopening of the case would “serve to vindicate Sarah Halimi and all the Jewish victims that have been attacked and killed over the years.”
Knoll charged that the French judiciary “was bowing like a servant” before alleged murderers like Traore.
“There is no political justification for this,” he declared. “Until you get off your knees, France will stay on its knees.”
About 50 people attended Sunday’s rally, many of them carry signs reading “Je Suis Sarah Halimi,” “Je Suis Mireille Knoll” and “Je Suis Juif” (“I am Jewish”).
Antisemitism has risen precipitously in France over the last 15 years, with Jews in the country suffering from extreme violence as well as more frequent incidents of verbal abuse and intimidation.