An explosion at a kosher grocery shop near Paris, reportedly caused by a grenade, damaged the store and injured a shopper, French police said.
Police have not linked Wednesday afternoon’s attack to the release of caricatures hours earlier by a Paris weekly depicting the Muslim Prophet Muhammad, including one featuring a haredi Orthodox Jew and a religious Muslim.
The store in the Paris suburb of Sarcelles reportedly was full of shoppers after the Rosh HaShanah holiday beginning their preparations for the pre-Yom Kippur meal, Moshe Cohen-Sabban, president of the Jewish communities of Val d’Oise, told the French online edition of the newspaper Metro.
Richard Prasquier, the president of CRIF, the umbrella group representing French Jewish communities, told the television channel i>TELE that two men dressed in black had tossed an explosive device into the shop without saying anything.
“I have no reason to doubt the anti-Semitic character of this action,” Prasquier said.
According to Metro, the injured shopper sustained contusions in both arms. The newspaper quoted Marc Djeballi, a member of the Sarcelles Jewish community, as saying the device was “a grenade, not a firecracker.”
Sarcelles, which is known as “Little Jerusalem,” is home to a large Jewish community that emigrated from North Africa in the 1960s.
In other French news, a Lyon court handed a six-month suspended jail sentence to a young man who attacked a Jewish train passenger.
Last week’s ruling by the criminal court of Lyon was the result of a complaint filed by the SPCJ, the French Jewish community’s watchdog against anti-Semitism.
The assailant, who was not identified by name in French media, hit a man wearing a kipah on Jan. 26, 2011 aboard a train traveling from Paris to Lyon.
“You Jews with your skullcaps, you think you run the world,” he said, adding profanities. The assailant then followed the Jewish man to the train bar, making derogatory remarks about him, his mother, father “and your whole race.” He then hit the man in the chest.
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