France: Funerals Held For Shooting Victims

March 21st, 20124:29 am @


Jonathan Sandler with his sons Arieh and Gabriel, and Mirian Monsonego

The victims of the shootings at Ozar Hatorah school will be buried in Jerusalem

4:05am UK, Wednesday March 21, 2012

Mark Stone, in Toulouse

The funerals of four people gunned down in southwest France are due to take place later.

Three children and a rabbi were murdered at Ozar Hatorah Jewish school in Toulouse, just days after three paratroopers were shot – two of them fatally – 30 miles away in Montauban.

Another soldier was shot dead in Toulouse the previous Sunday. All the victims were shot in the head at point blank range.

The coffins of the four killed at the school were flown to Paris and then on to Israel ahead of burials in Jerusalem.

The rabbi killed at the school was Jonathan Sandler, an Israeli-French dual citizen originally from Jerusalem who moved to France last September.

His two sons – Gavriel, three, and Arieh, six – and Miriam Monsonego, eight, thought to be the daughter of the school’s headteacher, were also killed.

Coffins bearing the four victims are carried out from the Ozar Hatorah Jewish school

The coffins of the four victims are taken from Ozar Hatorah school

France’s President Nicholas Sarkozy described meeting the wife of Mr Sandler at Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris on Tuesday night.

“We had an exchange with the families and you can’t imagine how disturbing, how deeply disturbed we all are,” he said.

“I must say we have been impressed by the courage with this mother, who is now left with her very young daughter. She has told me how she saw her husband and her two children spilled blood.

“There is also the principal of this school who saw his eight-year-old daughter hit in the head, point blank.”

Mr Sarkozy will be among those attending memorials in Montauban later for the three soldiers killed.

Members of the 17th Airborne Combat Engineering Regiment, Corporal Abel Chennouf, 24, and Private Mohammed Legouad, 26, were both of North African origin.

The third paratrooper, 28-year-old Corporal Loic Liber, of Caribbean origin, was left in a coma by the attack.

On March 11, Staff Sergeant Imad Ibn-Ziaten, 30, was shot dead next to a school in a quiet district of Toulouse. He too was of North African descent.

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