Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo revoked the prestigious Medal of the City of Paris awarded to Mahmoud Abbas in 2015, according to an open letter she wrote to the Palestinian Authority president.
Hidalgo wrote that she is revoking Abbas’ medal, known in French as La médaille Grand Vermeil de Paris, due to his recent comments in which he expressed a “clear desire to deny the genocide to which the Jewish populations of Europe were victims at the hands of the Nazi regime.”
Abbas claimed that Ashkenazi Jews stem from Europe, not the Middle East, and were murdered during the Holocaust due to hatred against them for their historic role as money lenders.
According to Hidalgo, Abbas’ comments “are contrary to our universal values and the historical truth of the Holocaust, so you can no longer claim…the highest distinction of Paris.”
“I condemn your comments in the strongest possible terms; no cause can justify revisionism and negationism. As you know, the Holocaust is part of the history of Paris,” she wrote to Abbas.
“In our city, during World War II, tens of thousands of children, women and men of the Jewish faith were rounded up, deported and then exterminated in death camps.”
Abbas received the medal, which also made him an honorary citizen of the city, almost exactly eight years ago on September 21, 2015, in “recognition of his actions towards finding peace between the Palestinians and the Israelis,” Paris said at the time.