Murder of Mireille Knoll
|Date||March 23, 2018|
|Location||11th arrondissement of Paris|
|Burial||Cimetière parisien de Bagneux|
Mireille Knoll was an 85-year old French Jewish woman and Holocaust survivor who was murdered by two suspects in her Paris apartment on 23 March 2018. The murder has been officially described by French authorities as an anti-Semitic hate crime.
There are two alleged assailants, Yacine Mihoub and Alex Carrimbacus. One, a 29-year-old neighbor of Knoll, who suffered from Parkinson's disease, and had known her since he was a child, and the other, an unemployed 21-year-old. The two suspects entered the apartment and reportedly stabbed Knoll 11 times before setting her on fire. The older suspect told investigators that the younger suspect asserted “She’s a Jew. She must have money.” One allegedly shouted "allahu Akbar' as they stabbed her.
The Paris prosecutor’s office characterized the 26 March murder as a hate crime, a murder committed because of the “membership, real or supposed, of the victim of a particular religion.” The New York Times noted, "The speed with which the authorities recognized the hate-crime nature of Ms. Knoll’s murder is being seen as a reaction to the anger of France’s Jews at the official response to that earlier crime, which prosecutors took months to characterize as anti-Semitic."
Arrests and legal proceedings
Two suspects were immediately taken into custody; authorities revealed only that one of the suspects was born in 1989. Suspect Yacine Mihoub, 28 years of age, the son of Knoll's neighbour, was previously known to authorities as he had sexually assaulted the daughter of Knoll's assistant. Mihoub was released from prison in September 2017. Suspect Alex Carrimbacus, 21 years of age, got acquainted with Mihoub in prison.
The funeral procession, held on March 28, drew thousands of mourners, who walked solemnly through the streets of Paris. They walked from the Place de la Nation to Knoll's apartment building in the 11th arrondissement. Knoll was buried at the Cimetière parisien de Bagneux. Her grave was visited by Emmanuel Macron, in a private capacity to support her family in a visit not covered by media.
According to The Atlantic, this killing marked a shift in the attitude of the French government. In contrast with the similar, antisemitic murders of Ilan Halimi (2006) and Sarah Halimi (2017), no relation, who were also killed by Islamists. French authorities immediately called this killing an act of anti-Jewish hatred.
- BFMTV. "Meurtre de Mireille Knoll: ce que révèle le PV des enquêteurs". BFMTV (in French). Retrieved 2018-04-06.
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- Bremmer, Charles (28 March 2018). "Two charged with killing 85-year-old Holocaust survivor Mireille Knoll". The Times (of London). Retrieved 3 April 2018.
- Nossiter, Adam (26 March 2018). "She Survived the Holocaust, to Die in a 2018 Hate Crime". New York Times. Retrieved 28 March 2018.
- McAuley, James (28 March 2018). "The brutal killing of a Holocaust survivor raises anti-Semitism fears in France". Washington Post. Retrieved 28 March 2018.
- "Mort de Mireille Knoll : ses meurtriers présumés sortaient de prison". Le Monde.fr (in French). Retrieved 2018-04-06.
- "News Funeral march for murdered Holocaust survivor Mireille Knoll draws thousands". DW News. 28 March 2018. Retrieved 28 March 2018.
- "Emmanuel Macron a assisté "à titre personnel" aux obsèques de Mireille Knoll". Le Huffington Post (in French). 2018-03-28. Retrieved 2018-04-03.
- Donadio, Rachel (29 March 2018). "The Meaning of France's March Against Anti-Semitism". The Atlantic. Retrieved 3 April 2018.