An official in the French town of Montpelier celebrated his birthday with a cake decorated with a swastika, which he described as “a gift from my SS friend.”
Djamel Boumaaz posted an image of the cake on his Facebook page, the Simon Wiesenthal Center said on Thursday.
The full text of the post celebrating his 40th birthday read: “I spent a beautiful day with my family, music, food in the home of my SS friend, then my birthday cake arrived, a gift from my SS friend.”
The Wiesenthal Center, an international Jewish rights organization, said that it had sent a letter of protest to Benedetto Zacchiroli, president of the European Coalition of Cities Against Racism.
The letter urged the coalition “to condemn Boumaaz and to urge the Mayor of Montpellier to take measures to remove him from his municipal functions.”
The post later appeared to have been removed from Boumaaz’s Facebook page. His Twitter account was suspended.
Boumaaz has previously been fined for performing the quenelle gesture, an inverted Nazi salute, at a session of the Montpellier city council, the center said. The gesture is illegal in France.
— SimonWiesenthalCntr (@simonwiesenthal) July 25, 2019
He was previously a member of the far-right National Front party. Boumaaz, a Muslim, quit the party in 2015 over what he termed anti-Muslim sentiments from party leader Marine Le Pen, the news site Infos H24 reported.
A known associate of Holocaust denier Alain Soral and anti-Semitic comedian Dieudonne M’bala M’bala, Boumaaz was second on the National Front list for the municipal elections in Montpelier in 2014.
In 2016, Boumaaz was investigated by city prosecutors for his Twitter account, which was marked “forbidden to dogs and Jews” and featured tweets mocking and denying the Holocaust.