Janice Atkinson, independent MEP for the South East of England, has demanded answers from the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, on claims that an Islamist terror suspect held for in connection with a vicious hammer attack on a French police officer had previously received an EU award.
Media reports say the Jihadi suspect – held in connection with the attack this week outside Notre-Dame Cathedral – was awarded The EU Commission’s National Journalist Prize Against Discrimination in 2009 for an article dealing with asylum seekers and their entitlement to healthcare.
In a letter to Juncker, Janice, who has recently called for the restoration of the death penalty in the UK for terrorist murderers, asks if and why such an EU award was made to Farid Ikken: what background checks were made on him before nominating him; and whether it is now known that he was already radicalised at the time of the award.
Algerian-born Ikken, now 40, went to Sweden to study for a Masters degree a decade ago. While there he married a Swedish woman from whom he was later divorced. His nephew has told journalists that he believes Ikken was radicalised during his time in Sweden.
On June 6 he was arrested in Paris where he remains in custody after allegedly launching his frenzied attack on the police officer with a cry of “This is for Syria”.
Janice said: “If it is true that Ikken was honoured in this way then it completes the caricature of the EU as a body which not only welcomes unchecked immigration through its borders but also heaps honours on those who aim to main or kill its citizens.
“This is not an issue Mr Juncker can evade and I look forward to receiving answers from him.”
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