The imam of a Toulouse mosque, Mohamed Tataiat, was tried on appeal for inciting “violence or racial hatred” following a preaching broadcast in 2017.
On September 14, 2021, the criminal court in Toulouse acquitted Mohamed Tataiat, stating that there was no “desire to provoke hatred” in his remarks.
The prosecutor, who had requested six months suspended prison, had immediately appealed.
The debates at the hearing focused largely on a hadith included by Mohamed Tataiat, in his preaching of December 15, 2017 in the mosque of the district of Empalot, the largest in Toulouse,
According to this hadith, “the day of judgment will come only when the Muslims fight the Jews, the Jew will hide behind the tree and the stone, and the tree and the stone will say, ‘Oh Muslim, oh servant of God, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him, except for Algharqada, which is one of the trees of the Jews.'”
Speaking in Arabic through an interpreter, the Algerian imam, who has lived in France since 1985, said that his preaching “did not invite Muslims to fight Jews or Israelis. According to him, this hadith constituted on the contrary a “warning” to the Muslims so that they “do not participate in the movement which brings to this tragic end”.
A point of view that Muriel Ouaknine-Melki, lawyer of the National Bureau of Vigilance against antisemitism, one of the associations civil parties, does not share.
For her, these words can be at the origin of violent acts.
Ms. Ouaknine-Melki stressed that Mohammed Merah, responsible for the death of seven people in 2012 in Toulouse, claimed “to have wanted to avenge the Palestinian children”.
Nearly ten associations have filed a civil suit, including the Licra, the Crif, SOS Racism and the General Alliance against Racism and for the Respect of French and Christian Identity.