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Hundreds of women come to the streets in France to denounce sexual harassment

The academic expert in Islam Tariq Ramadan, accused of rape by two women

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Hundreds of women come to the streets in France to denounce sexual harassment

Something seems to have changed in France after scandal Weinstein. The wave of actresses who have accused of sexual abuse of once all-powerful American producer, including several French, has opened door to allegations of sexual harassment in this country. This Sunday, hundreds of women went to streets in France to visible a problem so far only revealed in all its magnitude in social networks under labels such as international MeToo or French Balancetonporc (Denounce your pig). And it's not just about words, it's also starting to be concrete actions. The Paris prosecutor's office has opened a preliminary investigation into Islamologist Tariq Ramadan, which two women have accused of rape.

In square of Republic of Paris, several hundred people, both women and men, came on Sunday to concentration organized from Facebook under motto "Me too, in real life" that also had aftershocks in Marseille, Lyon, Nantes or Toulouse, between Or. Every sign was a chilling accusation. Assaulted at age of 17 by my gynecologist, Marital rape, was 15 years old, 9 years, lifelong injury... Anna, a young Parisian woman, summed her tragedy on anor poster: raped at age 7, harassed (by a policeman) at 19, humiliated by Justice who did not punish her aggressors. For her, it was important to go to make visible a scourge that, he said, has been silenced for too long.

"The important thing is to become aware of phenomenon, that we are many more than people believe," he said. "And also know that we are not alone."

France is a country where 123 women victims of gender-violence died last year. It is also a country that did not tear (too much) garments for a case like that of Dominique Strauss Kahn, who was head of International Monetary Fund and potential presidential candidate, until he was arrested in new York in 2011 for sexually assaulting a Hotel worker and n investigated in France for pimping. It can be surprising that it has been an external case, like that of Weinstein, who has fulfilled patience of women.

"It's not about Weinstein or Strauss Kahn, it's all those women who have dared to talk, that's what's different now, that we've all gone out to talk," said Anna.

"The success of this concentration is that women who so far felt very isolated in ir suffering, feel today able to go out with ir banners, feel surrounded and protected and (...)" They have need to speak, y are fed up, he explained to country Carole Galand, organizer of demonstrations.

Two complaints against Tariq Ramadan

This is case of two women who have filed formal complaints for rape against Tariq Ramadan.

The second complaint against Swiss islamologist, grandson of founder of Muslim Brorhood, was deposited with prosecutor of Paris on Thursday, only six days after writer Henda Ayari, an old Salafist reconverted into militant feminist and secular, He made first formal accusation against Ramadan, professor of contemporary Islamic studies at Oxford University.

Shortly after denunciation of Ayari, which has led to opening of a preliminary investigation for rape, sexual assault, violence and death threats, according to France Press, Ramadan, who made a formal denial through his lawyer, presented in turn a Lawsuit for "denunciation libelous" against Ayari. However, since second formal complaint has been known, Ramadan has not been pronounced again.

According to newspapers Le Monde and Le Parisien, who claim to have had access to testimony of second victim, story of this is "detailed and overwhelming" and reveals a "great brutality". The woman, who has wanted to remain anonymous, is a 45-year-old Muslim who claims that Ramadan, 55, raped and brutally hit a hotel in Lyon in 2009. His lawyer is trying to persuade five or women to file complaints about sexual abuses that would also have been allegedly submitted by Ramadan, notes Le Monde, which ensures that re have been suspicions and even accusations for years — Although so far not in face of justice — of sexual abuse of islamologist against various women.

For Carole Galand, se allegations are one more consequence of end of silence of many victims. "The fact that women come out of ir silence is going to exert a weight on aggressors." It is necessary to stop protecting aggressors, it is necessary to stop being protected and excused because y are known or have power.


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