Valérie Pécresse withdraws the Simone-Veil Prize awarded in 2019 to former Charlie Hebdo journalist Zineb El Rhazoui. "His recent statements regarding the tragic events in Israel ... are outrageous and shocking. They have terribly wounded our compatriots who lived through the barbarity of the Shoah, "justifies on her social networks the president of the Île-de-France region, the institution that proposes the candidates for this prize.
A decision that Valérie Pécresse claims to have taken in agreement with Simone Veil's descendants. It was Aurélien Veil, one of the grandsons of the former Minister of Health and Holocaust survivor, who questioned Valérie Pécresse on a message retweeted by Zineb El Rhazoui.
Why I have decided, in agreement with Simone Veil's heirs, to withdraw, on behalf of the @iledefrance Region, the Simone Veil Prize from Zineb El Rhazoui. ⤵️ pic.twitter.com/rv78OpeyfX
— Valérie Pécresse (@vpecresse) December 10, 2023
The former Charlie Hebdo journalist had retweeted a message posted on X. "The Zionists have perfected the science of genocide. They improved the Nazi model," the tweet read. "The goal is the extermination of the Palestinians just as the Nazis planned to exterminate the Jews," the author of the message added.
A message that Aurélien Veil considers incompatible with the commitment pursued by Simone Veil throughout her life. "Among my grandmother's struggles are the transmission of the memory of the Holocaust and the refusal to trivialize the genocide committed by the Nazis," he wrote on his X account.
Good morning, Mrs. @vpecresse.
Four years ago, the Ile-de-France region presented Mrs. @ZinebElRhazoui with an award named after my grandmother Simone Veil.
My grandmother who spent several months, from April 1944 to January 1945, surviving in the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp, pic.twitter.com/E03LYqLpZS
— Aurélien Veil (@AurelienVeil) December 9, 2023
"I call on you, in the name of universalism and the values advocated by Simone Veil, to condemn all the hateful, racist and dehumanizing remarks to which I have been subjected since I denounced the unacceptable abuses and crimes committed by the Israeli army against Palestinian civilians."
"The condemnation of the crimes committed by Hamas and other Palestinian armed factions against Israeli civilians on 7 October should not be put into perspective. Every civilian who comes under fire from an armed organization, militia or regular army, must be denounced," she added.
Zineb El Rhazoui has been insulted and threatened with death in recent years because of her fight against Islamism. Last April, rapper Booba was fined €5,000 for insulting the journalist in 2019. While riots had shaken the town of Mantes-la-Jolie (Yvelines), Zineb El Rhazoui considered that in such circumstances, "we must fire live bullets".