Man in France stabs neighbor 15 times, says he ‘wanted to kill a Jew’

58-year-old non-Jewish victim repeatedly stabbed in attack said to be similar to two recent anti-Semitic murders in the country

Illustrative. A French policeman standing with his equipment, April 12, 2019. (Christophe SIMON / AFP)
Illustrative. A French policeman standing with his equipment, April 12, 2019. (Christophe SIMON / AFP)

A man in northern France said he stabbed his neighbor because he “wanted to kill a Jew.”

The attack, first reported on April 8, occurred in Bourdon, a commune in the Somme department in northern France, on April 5, the French-language 20 Minutes news website reported.

The 58-year-old victim was stabbed 15 times in his abdomen and face. He was injured in the liver and gallbladder and underwent surgery, according to the report.

He was saved by a friend who was with him at the time of the assault, and came between the victim and the attacker.

Some 1,000 members of France’s Jewish community gathered outside the home of Sarah Halimi in Paris to commemorate her alleged anti-Semitic murder, April 9, 2017. (Screen capture: 0404 Video)

The attacker, 18, was indicted for attempted murder due to race or ethnicity. He told witnesses that he “wanted to kill a Jew.” According to the report, the victim is not Jewish.

The man reportedly also attacked two policemen, while attempting to escape from a hospital where he was scheduled to undergo hand surgery.

He also was scheduled to undergo psychiatric evaluation to determine whether he is criminally responsible, the report said, a procedure that could take several months, according to the National Bureau for Vigilance Against Anti-Semitism.

The BNVCA said in a statement that the crime is reminiscent of two fatal attacks against Jewish women.

In the first, prosecutors said Sarah Halimi, a 66-year-old teacher and physician, was murdered by her Muslim neighbor in April 2017, in part because she was Jewish. In the second, in March 2018, Mireille Knoll‘s body was found burnt and stabbed in her Paris apartment, after her neighbor had threatened to burn her.

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