While being the guest on the programme Questions politiques on France Inter and France Info, the leader of La France Insoumise predicted events such as the Merah attacks in Toulouse, during the last week of the presidential campaign.
“You will see that in the last week of the presidential campaign, we will have a serious incident or murder. It was Merah in 2012, it was the attack in the last week on the Champs Elysées [in 2017…]. All this is written in advance,” said Jean-Luc Mélenchon during the programme Questions politiques on France Inter and France Info. A slip that was considered to be conspiratorial and has since caused controversy.
The candidate for the presidential election of 2022 refers here to the 2012 attacks of the jihadist Mohamed Merah, who killed seven people: three soldiers, three children and a Jewish teacher, in Montauban and Toulouse. “You will see that in the last week of the presidential campaign, we will have a serious incident or a murder”, to “point the finger at Muslims”, predicted Jean-Luc Mélenchon.
These statements provoked strong reactions, starting with that of Latifa Ibn Ziaten, the mother of Imad, the French army paratrooper murdered by Merah: “Jean-Luc Mélenchon’s comments are inadmissible and should not even be made. Respect is a minimum for the honour of my son, the other victims and the bereaved families”.
The entire political class also reacted quickly: “When you use demagogy like that, you can’t claim to be president of the Republic”, the leader of the socialist group in the National Assembly Valérie Rabault added, judging it “unacceptable” to “reduce the atrocities of the Montauban and Toulouse attacks in 2012 to electoral machinations”.
“We are really beyond shame,” said Macron’s party MP Aurore Bergé also on Twitter.
CRIF President Francis Kalifat also reacted: “The abject remarks of @JLMelenchon are an obscene attack on the memory of the victims of the attacks in Toulouse, Montauban and the Champs Élysées. After the islamo-leftist clientelism, the conspiracy. We’re hitting rock bottom!”
The party La France Insoumise defends itself
The Member of European Parliament from La France Insoumise Manuel Bompard spoke of a “shabby operation to make people believe that Jean-Luc Mélenchon denies the reality of the terrorist attacks, while he denounces their use as a political tool in electoral campaigns”.
Jean-Luc Mélenchon himself defended himself at the end of the day on Twitter: “A distressing buzz. Post-truth in action”.