Prisoner required against Franco-Syrian Imam Ayachi

Prisoner required against Franco-Syrian Imam Ayachi

The trial of the famous Franco-Syrian Imam Bassam Ayachi ended on Friday, April 8, in Paris, with an indictment during which the representative of the National Anti-Terrorist Prosecutor’s Office (PNAT) requested a sentence of five years in prison, three of which were suspended. A sentence that would not involve a return to prison, given his pre-trial detention, of the now 75-year-old man.

Four days of hearing was not enough to get a definitive idea of ​​this thousand and one life character, “Elusive” according to the prosecutor. Wearing a lattice jacket, the long-bearded monk lost his right arm in Syria in an attack by the Islamic State (IS) organization. Imam Ayachi, who was both an informant for the French and Belgian intelligence services and a warlord, stayed in his hometown of Syria from 2013 to 2018.

French justice accuses him of participating in an “association of terrorist criminals” during this period. He told him he was there to free his country from the dictatorship of the Assad regime but also to protect France and Belgium, his two adopted countries, from the threat of extremists who came to fight there. Although he has been found to have regular and extensive contacts with the intelligence services, as evidenced by excerpts from exchanges by e-mail, telephone and e-mail, not all the ins and outs of this co-operation are known due to the refusal of the intelligence services to disclose documents in the name of defense secrecy. This obstruction was the subject of a priority question of constitutionality (QPC), which was found admissible by the court on the first day of the trial on Tuesday, April 5.

Also read: Article reserved for our subscribers Anti-terrorism judges question defense secrecy

“Not a fair trial”

Mr. Ayachi’s co-operation with the French services is also attested by appointments at the French consulate in Istanbul, meetings in Beirut with a certain “ Mary ”and payment lists of men working in the sheikh’s service. However, the services went so far as to make up for the accidental arrest of the appointment scheduled for Mr. Ayachi, which led to his arrest in France in March 2018. Similarly, his phones were apparently “cleaned” before to be handed over to the judicial authorities. The order for reference speaks of “Manipulation”. “You are asked to make a decision based on things you are not aware of.”revolted Mr.e Joris Monin de Flaugergues, Mr. Ayachi’s lawyer. “This is not a fair trial!” » he added.

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