“While about 60% of the incarcerated population in France, today that’s around 40,000 prisoners, can be considered culturally or religiously Muslim, the Islamist radicalization is now likely to involve several hundred prisoners,” stated UMP member Guillaume Larrivé in a report “For an Islamist Anti-Radicalization Plan in Prison.”
Larrivé worked to update the penitentiary administrative budget for 2015, and advocates for “a shock therapy:” the creation of Anti-Radicalization Specialized Units (USAR) for prisoners returning from jihad, which would include instituting PA systems in prisons and blocking unauthorized phones. He contends that in today’s prison system, “outside signs of radicalization have practically disappeared, leaving a place for radicalization and proselytizing that is much more discreet and therefore harder to detect.”
He discusses the politics of the Minister of Justice Christiane Taubira, and contends that “substantial leeway created by the 2015 Finance Act within the prison administration budget is in fact absorbed by the ‘Taubira Law,’ that is, favoring an approach of ‘social treatment’ of offenders outside the prison walls.” Larrivé argues that, “the government has chosen to privilege freedom…offenders whose places are in prisons and to increase the number of probation officers who do not assure real control of former inmates.”
According to Larrivé, this legislation “is to the detriment of the pursuit of a development programmed tailored to the needs of our country and to the security of our prisons.”
Nadine Morano, politician and member of the UMP, caused a scene at Gare de l’Est in Paris after seeing a fully veiled woman waiting for a train. “Ranting and thundering,” she called for local police in the train station. The woman was wearing a niqab, and not a burqa as Morano contended. After summoning the police they asked Morano to see identification. She refused to provide identification to the police who did not recognize her and left, “still very angry.”
A fifty-four year old man has been sentenced to six months in prison after yelling “Long live the Islamic State,” and threatening to return to the scene with a gun. He was found guilty for “publicly condoning an act of terrorism.” The case dates back to last Monday when the man, who received government financial assistance and had already been charged with threatening public order, became angry. He is “unknown by intelligence services, it is not someone who is in danger of leaving for Syria,” said Stephanie Breton.
In an online video called “Message of the Mujahid” (Message of the Fighter), the Islamic State continued to call for attacks against the members of the coalition conducting airstrikes in Iraq and Syria.
This time the threat comes from a Frenchmen who presents himself as a jihadist. The video has yet to be authenticated by French authorities and the Minister of the Interior refused to comment. However Romain Caillet, a research specialist on Islamists, revealed that this jihadist has previously appeased in a video documenting the life of foreign fighters in Raqa, Iraq.
In the recent video the man speaks in a heavy Southern France accent and addresses France and its government, “We are going to give a message to France regarding the strikes in Iraq and Syria. We have warned you, you are at war against the Islamic State. We are people whose victory is assured by God,” he declared.
“Look what’s happened throughout the world, they have gathered against us. Why? Because we defend Islam and we want to enforce the law of Allah. We defend the blood of Muslims. They have gathered against us to kill us. It’s not us who are criminals (sic), it’s the cowards who drop bombs from the sky…We will take revenge for all the brothers you have killed…You think you’re safe…Whether in France or in all countries…We will appeal to all the brothers living in France to kill any civilian…You will never be safe. You will regret it,” he repeated.
The second part of the message is in Arabic. This is the second time that France has been directly threatened by the Islamic State after the kidnapping and assassination of Hervé Gourdel.
Paris-Dauphine offers a Master’s degree in Islamic Finance, providing the legal framework to do business within Islam. Farid Abderrezak, who teaches at Paris-Dauphine, is a banking specialist with BNP Paribas Nahman in Bahrain and says he is able to continue his work despite such “constraints.” “Look, profitability remains the primary criterion for investors, which does not always go along with the religious argument, except in Saudi Arabia. It is necessary to use Islamic finance wisely.” To circumvent the interest as practiced in conventional finance, there is, for example the “mourabaha” technique: the bank purchases the commodity, then resells it to its client in increments, integrating the retail price into the cost of financing.
The degree attracts mainly Frenchmen but also foreigners who come from North Africa, Mauritania, Senegal, Ivory Coast, and Lebanon.
Islamic finance is a niche that several students study to help them in their other areas of study. “Conventional finance or Islamic [finance], the markets are cyclic, one needs to adapt,” said Paul Evin, a student at Paris-Dauphine.
Augustin Olivier, another student, said, “There is a demand in Europe and there’s no reason for only those from Luxembourg and the British to arrogate the market.” This comes after a report written in 2007 at the request of Christine Lagarde who counted on attracting some 100 billion dollars in investment in France due to the development of Islamic finance—that the idea of the master’s degree was born. “Islamic finance has certainly not had the expected development and growth in France, but it is progressing little by little with new products that are ‘sharia compatible,’” said Michel Storck, professor of finance law. “Our students easily find work, especially in neighboring Luxembourg. We hope to encourage research in this domain and already have three PhD students whose research is funded by their home countries.”
For several years, French Muslims have rallied to open their own schools. Today there are 30 private Muslim schools, 282 private Jewish schools, and 8,485 private Catholic schools.
Since 2010, many projects have emerged with interesting features: the majority of Muslim schools are independent and were initiatives of the local community. Today, these schools are still heavily supported by their original supporters. Their financing is primarily provided by several generous individuals and primarily funds tuition. Additionally, there are several charter schools for Muslim students that receive partial government funding.
Minister of the Interior Bernard Cazeneuve visited the mosque in Carpentras at the prayer hour while believers celebrated Eid. Cazeneuve was hosted by Mohamed Moussaoui, Vice President of the National Council of the Muslim Faith, and Khalid Belcadi, President of the Regional Council of the Muslim Faith. Representatives from Jewish and Christian communities were also present.
Representatives from the Muslim community wished to bring a message of peace, and said that they could find “no words strong enough” to denounce the barbaric acts committed by the Islamic State. “What is happening, the Muslims of France are in no way responsible and in no case should they excuse themselves,” stated Cazeneuve. “We must take responsibility and give ourselves the means to protect our youth, notably by monitoring speeches and their content…Those who leave France to fight are complicit in these crimes.”
Cazeneuve expressed his support for Muslim community and told victims of aggression to file complaints “each time an attack or an insult is made against a community or a place of worship.” He continued, “You should feel neither guilty nor accountable for acts of terrorism. There is no place for hurtful stigmatizations…there is only room for Frenchmen to gather in the Republic around its values. I will not accept any attack against a religion or that Islamophobia develops in France.”
A radicalized ex-military tried to recruit his ex-colleagues for the jihad. The Dutch secret security services MIVD and AIVD are investigating the case.
The ex-military approached his ex-colleagues by mail.
But because of security issues spokesperson of neither the airbase where the ex-military worked or the security services can give any information on this issue.
On social media are circulating different profiles of Muslim radicals who say to have gained military experience inside the Dutch armed forces. And even though it is never confirmed by Defence it is suspected that Volkel is the only place in the Netherlands where nuclear weapons are being stored.
Ineke van der Valk (University of Amsterdam) investigated acts of violence against Muslims and mosques. Two/third of the mosques she questioned have experience some sort of act of violence: the breaking of windows, arson and there were also mosques that found a dead sheep or pig near their mosque.
90% of the mosques went to the police. However in the majority of cases the police ‘didn’t do anything’ and two/third of the perpetrators were never found.
Most of the mosques keep quiet about the incidents in the media, because they are afraid of invoking even more aggression.
CMO (Contact Institution Muslims and Government) pleads for an Islamophobia-register. According to mosques organizations the Islamic communities don’t believe that their reports about the ‘incidents’ are taken seriously by the police.
Eid is traditionally a holiday during which a Muslim is expected to slaughter a sheep, however there is a growing problem surrounding the holiday due to the limited capacity of slaughterhouses in France. Only one hundred machines would be approved in France as appropriate for slaughter. As a result, the French Council of the Muslim Faith (CFCM) once again recommended that communities spread the days of slaughter out (Saturday, Sunday and Monday). However, many believers are reluctant to change.
The price of sheep has sharply increased due to the lack of slaughterhouses. Abdallah Zekri, a member of the CFCM has for the second time launched a boycott of the purchase of sheep, saying that it “seems to be followed” this year. “I don’t mind shearing the sheep, but not the Muslims,” he said.
Influential blogger and specialist in the halal market, Fateh Kimouche stated that “One cannot, for reasons that are purely economic…burden our religion with debt.” He contended that Muslims “contribute to the survival of French agriculture” by injecting “about 50 million Euros” into the industry during Eid. “If we really want to help Gaza–and there is not only Gaza [to help]–give more, but do not neglect this rite.”