update desk

Prosecution begins of Hassan Diab, charged with 1980 Paris synagogue bombing

The Lebanese-Canadian academic has been identified as a suspect since 1999, but Canada fought extradition to Paris for years.

Lebanese-Canadian academic Hassan Diab is currently on trial for a synagogue bombing in Paris on Oct. 3, 1980. Source: YouTube/CBC News.
Lebanese-Canadian academic Hassan Diab is currently on trial for a synagogue bombing in Paris on Oct. 3, 1980. Source: YouTube/CBC News.

On Oct. 3, 1980, someone planted a bomb outside a Paris synagogue as 320 Jews gathered to celebrate Simchat Torah. The explosion killed four people and wounded 46 others. No group claimed responsibility, and the crime remained unsolved.

French detectives believe that the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) was responsible, and now, 69-year-old Hassan Diab is standing trial for the attack.

The Lebanese-Canadian academic, who claims to be innocent, faces a life sentence. A verdict is expected on April 21, reported the Associated Press. Diab, who lives freely in Canada, is being tried in absentia. He was previously imprisoned for three years in France but was released due to a lack of evidence.

In 2021, a French court ruled that he had to stand trial again.

“It’s a positive development that the trial is taking place, even if he (the suspect) will not be there and even if he is acquitted,” a lawyer for two families of people killed in the bombing told the AP.

A primary piece of evidence is a handwriting sample that prosecutors call a “smoking gun” linking Diab to the bomber.

Diab’s lawyers, however, say the sample was improperly analyzed, and judges have also questioned its reliability, according to CBC News.

You have read 3 articles this month.
Register to receive full access to JNS.

Just before you scroll on...

Israel is at war. JNS is combating the stream of misinformation on Israel with real, honest and factual reporting. In order to deliver this in-depth, unbiased coverage of Israel and the Jewish world, we rely on readers like you. The support you provide allows our journalists to deliver the truth, free from bias and hidden agendas. Can we count on your support? Every contribution, big or small, helps JNS.org remain a trusted source of news you can rely on.

Become a part of our mission by donating today
Topics
Comments
Thank you. You are a loyal JNS Reader.
You have read more than 10 articles this month.
Please register for full access to continue reading and post comments.
Never miss a thing
Get the best stories faster with JNS breaking news updates