French President Emmanuel Macron has accused the Palestinian Islamic resistance movement and political party Hamas of being “directly implicated” in the murder of history teacher Samuel Paty.
The group denied the claim made by the French president, saying in a media statement: “The Islamic resistance movement Hamas confirms that the French-based Sheikh Yassin group has no organisational relationship with our movement.”
Hamas condemned “the biased media attempts that seek to engage the name of our movement in an internal battle in which we are not a party. Our fight is only against the Zionist occupation and for freedom and independence.”
President Macron had vowed to “intensify action” against what he called “radical Islam”, after the murder and beheading of teacher Samuel Paty by a Wahhabi terrorist.
In particular, he announced the dissolution of the so-called “Sheikh Ahmed Yassin” group, which he claimed was loyal to Hamas and “directly involved” in the attack.
“Similar decisions against associations and groups of individuals will be issued in the coming days and weeks,” he told reporters from Bobigny, a northeastern suburb of Paris,
Worshippers attending a mosque that the French authorities decided to close after the recent Paris attack said they were “being punished” for a crime they didn’t commit.
Some 1,300 worshippers regularly attend the mosque, which will be closed for six months as of Wednesday evening, according to a decree issued by the administrative authorities of the Seine-Saint-Denis region.
France has in the past been an avid supporter of Wahhabi organisations and armed groups abroad, notably in Libya and Syria. However, the recent murder of Samuel Paty by a takfiri extremist from Chechnya has been used by many politicians as an excuse to blame and crack down on Islamic organisations in general.