Terrorist Suspects Arrested In and Around Paris

News Agencies – November 9, 2010

Five people believed to have trained as Islamist militants in Pakistan’s troubled Afghan border region have been arrested in and around Paris. Some of those arrested were picked up in the suburb of Roissy, where France’s largest airport is located, security sources said on condition of anonymity. Police and intelligence officers have been questioning the suspects. Some of the suspects are apparently linked to death threats made a few weeks ago against the rector of the Grand Mosque of Paris, Dalil Boubakeur.
Al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden warned France last month that its planned ban on the Islamic full-face veil in public places and its involvement in the war in Afghanistan justified attacks on its nationals. French Interior Minister Brice Hortefeux later said that the country faced a real terror threat and he urged “total vigilance”.

Dalil Boubakeur Placed under Police Protection in France

News Agencies – September 20, 2010
France’s interior minister says the country has reinforced vigilance against terrorist threats, and the moderate rector of the main Paris mosque has been given armed guards. The Grand Mosque of Paris says its rector, Dalil Boubakeur, has been given three armed guards because of a new threat. Mosque spokesman Slimane Nadour says he has no information on the nature of the threat but says “the threat is real.”
Interior Minister Brice Hortefeux told reporters Monday, “our vigilance is reinforced today,” without elaborating. Le Monde newspaper and RTL radio said Monday that France is under heightened threat of a terror attack on the transportation system and authorities are searching for a woman who could be plotting a suicide bombing in Paris.

Dalil Boubakeur Placed under Police Protection in France

News Agencies – September 20, 2010
France’s interior minister says the country has reinforced vigilance against terrorist threats, and the moderate rector of the main Paris mosque has been given armed guards. The Grand Mosque of Paris says its rector, Dalil Boubakeur, has been given three armed guards because of a new threat. Mosque spokesman Slimane Nadour says he has no information on the nature of the threat but says “the threat is real.”
Interior Minister Brice Hortefeux told reporters Monday, “our vigilance is reinforced today,” without elaborating. Le Monde newspaper and RTL radio said Monday that France is under heightened threat of a terror attack on the transportation system and authorities are searching for a woman who could be plotting a suicide bombing in Paris.

Le Figaro Reports that 70% of French Muslims will Fast during Ramadan, many young people

With the beginning of Ramadan, Le Figaro reports that almost 70% of French Muslims will fast, many of them in the concentrated suburbs. Dalil Boubakeur, rector of the Mosque of Paris, notes that since the 1990s, young people especially are evident in their Ramadan participation. A 2004 report suggested that fasting has had negative effects on the ability of students to perform in public schools.

Le Figaro Reports that 70% of French Muslims will Fast during Ramadan, many young people

With the beginning of Ramadan, Le Figaro reports from an IFOP survey that almost 70% of French Muslims will fast, many of them in the concentrated suburbs. Dalil Boubakeur, rector of the Mosque of Paris, notes that since the 1990s, young people especially are evident in their Ramadan participation. A 2004 report suggested that fasting has had negative effects on the ability of students to perform in public schools.

CFCM Condemns Protest Against Boubakeur In Front of the Paris Mosque

The French Council of the Muslim Faith (Conseil français du Culte Musulman) has firmly condemned the call to protest the Mosque of Paris’ rector and former head of the CFCM, Dalil Boubakeur, in response to his characterization of Israel in the touristic magazine, SVP-Israël.

Mohammed Moussaoui, the New CFCM President

Mohammed Moussaoui, a 44 year-old former math professor, was the only candidate for the French Council of the Muslim Faith (CFCM) elections and won quite expectedly. He replaces the former president, Dalil Boubakeur, rector of the Grande Mosqu_e de Paris. Moussaoui is the vice-president of the French Muslim Assembly (RMF) and is a proponent of a consensual Islam, respectful of both founding texts and current contexts, adding that the CFCM most become more involved in the education of imams in the French context. He speaks French, Arabic, Berber and English. Moussaoui told Le Figaro that the group does not have a theological mission: We are not creating a new theology for a French Islam. I believe the following principle: that in one’s private life, one can keep their clothing and food customs. But on the collective level, French law must apply for everyone. We respect the law on conspicuous religious signs in schools. But we don’t want this restriction to extend to universities, mayors’ offices, or in the workplace.

Boubakeur celebrates the victory of Sarkozy

Dalil Boubakeur, leader of the Paris Mosque, expressed his pleasure at the victory of Nicolas Sarkozy in a press release. “French Muslims, he said, appreciate the work [of Sarkozy] as Minister of the Interior and respect his efforts to represent Muslims within the Republic alongside other faiths.

Chirac Pays Homage To Muslim War Veterans

President Jacques Chirac paid homage Sunday to the hundreds of thousands of Muslim soldiers from former colonies who fought for France in World War I, unveiling a memorial on the site of the battle of Verdun. “The Verdun army was the army of the people, and all the people took part,” Chirac said, inaugurating a white-walled Moorish-style monument. “It was France in all its diversity.” The commemoration has come at a time of turbulence in France’s relations with its ethnic minorities. A senior Muslim leader said he hoped the belated recognition of his community’s war dead would help ease the tensions. Chirac himself looked back almost with nostalgia at the way France rallied in 1916 to fight the Germans. “This ceremony reminds us how in that moment of history, at Verdun and for Verdun, the French nation knew how to unite,” he said after laying a wreath at the monument. Separate memorials already stand for the Christians and Jews who died in the mud and misery of the trenches, but up until Sunday the Muslims only had a small plaque dedicated to them. France mobilized close to 600,000 colonial subjects in World War I, including many from Muslim territories like Algeria and Tunisia, and 78,000 were killed. Total French dead numbered 1.2 million. Some of France’s former colonies have complained that France has been ungrateful to its colonial troops, arguing that without their efforts, Paris would have fallen to the Germans. Dalil Boubakeur, head of the French Muslim Council, told reporters he hoped the new memorial would help close old wounds. He said he hoped it would provide “an impulse for the future for a closer integration of all of France’s Muslim communities,” adding that they are “completely French communities, thanks in no small part to the blood they have shed.” A wave of rioting in mainly poor, immigrant suburbs rocked France last autumn, laying bare the difficulties the country faces in integrating its multi- ethnic society. The government has responded with a mix of tough immigration laws and increased efforts to recognize minority groups. In May, France marked its first annual commemoration day for victims of the slave trade and last week Chirac opened a major new museum celebrating ethnic art from around the world. Verdun, where more than 300,000 troops died, lends itself to the task of reconciliation and was the setting for a memorable gesture of friendship between France and Germany, which fought three disastrous wars in less than a century. President Fran_ois Mitterrand of France and Chancellor Helmut Kohl of Germany stood together in Verdun in 1984 to display the new ties between their two countries.

The President Of The French Council Of Islamic Faith Is Preparing A Dissident Structure.

The French Council of the Islamic Faith (CFCM) is taking water on all sides. Its president, Dalil Boubakeur, is starting the creation of a separate structure, which would be baptized Conf_d_ration of the Moslems of France. In addition to the Mosque of Paris, where Boubakeur is the vice-chancellor, a nebula of associations could would form it, according to Abderrahmane Dahmane, president of the Council of Muslim Democrats of France.