Aftermath of the 1980 rue Copernic synagogue bombing. (AP/Remy de la Mauviniere) (AP/Remy de la Mauviniere)
rue Copernic synagogue bombing

The CRIF, the Representative Council of French Jewish Institutions, on Tuesday expressed outrage at the release of Hassan Diab, who is suspected of bombing the rue Copernic synagogue in Paris in October 1980, in which four people were murdered.

Diab, the main suspect of the attack against the synagogue in the rue Copernic in which forty other victims were wounded, was released from prison and is being tracked through an electronic bracelet.

Diab was arrested by Canadian police in 2008, but was released and lived under judicial supervision. He was later extradited from Canada and indicted in France in November 2014.

Roger Cukierman, president of CRIF, stated that “the arrest of Hassan Diab and his extradition to France in 2014 was a symbol of the determination of justice in the fight against terrorism. This release is outrageous and irresponsible. It is an insult to the victims and their families.”

He also warned that Diab’s release will be interpreted as France being soft on terrorism, “that has hard-hit France.”

Diab, Lebanese born in his 60s, worked as a professor of sociology at two Ottawa universities. He is suspected of placing the bomb in the synagogue.

The powerful explosive device was connected to a motorcycle, which was parked outside the synagogue. The bomb exploded as worshippers exited the synagogue.

The French intelligence agencies say Diab was a member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) terror organization.

Diab claims he is innocent, and that the evidence against him was based on a flawed handwriting analysis comparing his writing with that found on a Paris hotel registration card in 1980.

By: Max Gelber, United with Israel

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