Notre Dame Hammer Attacker Was Recipient of EU Journalistic Prize For Article On ‘Discrimination’ Against Migrants
The ‘’soldier of the caliphate’’ shot after launching himself at police with a hammer in Paris yesterday had worked as a journalist in Sweden prior to moving to France, and had even been awarded a prize from the EU for his writing on supposed Swedish discrimination against illegal immigrants.
The man, recovering from a chest wound after being shot by police during yesterday’s attack on police outside Paris’ Notre Dame Cathedral has been identified as Algerian national, Farid Ikken. Details on his identity are emerging today in French and Swedish media.
The 40-year-old Algerian had moved to Sweden in 2004 and worked as a freelance journalist with various media, most notably at Sveriges Radio – Swedish state radio.
In 2009, he won a prize in the European Commission’s ‘’For Diversity. Against Discrimination’’ journalistic competition for an article entitled, ‘’A Very Sick Christmas’’, writing on migrants and their difficulties accessing medical services in Sweden.
Prizes are awarded annually as part of an EU campaign to ‘’raise awareness of anti-discrimination legislation’’ and to promote the ‘’benefits of diversity’’ in European society. The wide net campaign invites submissions on a smorgasbord of discrimination and diversity issues, ranging from the problems experienced by sexual minorities to discrimination against migrants, Muslims and various protected groups.
Swedish records show that Farid Ikken left the country in 2013, at which time he returned to Algeria before moving to France in 2014 to continue his journalism studies at the eastern city of Metz, moving to the Paris suburb of Cergy last year. He is currently still listed as a student, working on his doctorate.
Despite being described as ”pro-western” by one of his professors at Metz, and showing no signs of radicalization or hatred towards his host countries, the AFP reports that a video has been found at Ikken’s apartment, in which he swears allegiance to the Islamic State.
An Algerian journalist who knew Ikken in 2013-2014 has described him to French media as a man that was ”very attached to his religion” but having shown no signs of support for Islamic extremism.
Carrying knives and a hammer, eyewitnesses heard Ikken scream, ‘’This is for Syria!’’ as he took a running jump at a group of three policemen outside the iconic landmark yesterday afternoon, striking one with a hammer before being shot. The policeman suffered only a minor injury in the attack.
Could the constant diet of discrimination and racism talk fostered by the prevailing establishment have contributed in any way to Ikken’s radicalization? It is likely a question that few in such circles will be asking despite this latest incident of Islamic-inspired extremism on European soil.
The shocking attack can be seen in the video from RT below.