‘Beleaguered’ French Jewry ‘Dealt an Incredible Injustice’ With Sarah Halimi Verdict, Says Algemeiner Editor-in-Chief
The recent verdict excusing the antisemitic killer of Sarah Halimi from legal proceedings has shown French Jewry that bringing justice to her case was simply “not a priority” for the country’s leaders, Algemeiner editor-in-chief Dovid Efune said during an interview with i24 News on Sunday, as tens of thousands rallied in cities across the world to protest the decision.
“The picture that is being painted to French Jewry is that this is just not a priority, this is just not important,” Efune said. “Holding this perpetrator to account, highlighting the antisemitic nature of the crime, and ensuring that he’s held fully accountable — it has not been a priority or a serious, significant concern to leaders of the French judicial system, and of course, the government.”
The family of Halimi — the French Jewish woman brutally murdered in her Paris apartment by 31-year-old Kobili Traore, who bellowed antisemitic slogans as he beat her — lost a final ruling in France’s top appeals court this month, which upheld an earlier decision that he could not be held criminally responsible because his intake of marijuana on the night of the killing had rendered him temporarily insane.
“One of the most beleaguered Jewish communities on the planet has been dealt an incredible injustice leaving every single member of that community concerned, and fearing that their security and safety can no longer be guaranteed and secured in the country of France,” Efune said of the ruling.
Thousands gathered in cities from Paris and Marseille to Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, London and New York on Sunday, calling for Traore to be held accountable.
“The call for justice is ringing across the globe,” said Efune on Sunday. “It’s resonated because the injustice is so great. We’ve known for so long that the harm, and the danger, and threats that have been thrust upon French Jewry have been significant and extensive and torturous. But certainly the ability to achieve justice and to track down perpetrators, has been fundamental and crucial.”
“Now, French Jews have faced with a scenario where not only are they facing the challenges and threats, but the tools with which to respond to them and hold perpetrators accountable have been hamstrung significantly by the state and the judicial system,” he added.
On Monday, a French judge with over 25 years of experience resigned from the bench in protest while citing the Traore ruling, remarking to the French newspaper Le Figaro, “What is this justice which takes up the cause of what appears to be an antisemitic assassination?”
Watch Efune’s full i24 News appearance: