France’s top administrative judicial body will consider Friday a request by the Interior Ministry to expel an imam in the country’s north.
The Council of State’s decision on the imam, who has Moroccan citizenship and is 58 years old, is expected to be issued in the next 48 hours.
The case began when Interior Minister Gerald Darmanan announced on June 28 the expulsion of Moroccan Islamic preacher of French origin Hassan Echoessen, accused of making anti-Semitic, homophobic and anti-women statements during sermons or conferences, some of which were organized almost 20 years ago.
The Minister of the Interior justified the expulsion in a ministerial decree that the imam spread “to a wide public opinion since the year 2000… a speech that incites hatred and discrimination and carries a vision of Islam contrary to the values of the republic.”
And the Minister of the Interior revealed in early August that the imam had been included by French intelligence on the “S” list, which concerns (state security), and that “for 18 months.”
For her part, the imam’s lawyer, Lucy Simon, said that “justice will decide” and pointed out that Hassan Ekwesin “does not represent a threat to public security.”
The lawyer had asked the Paris court to stop the execution of the expulsion decision, and the next day the Paris Administrative Court suspended the expulsion decision, considering that “the only reason based on the existence of an explicit and deliberate incitement to discrimination against women cannot justify the expulsion procedure without seriously and disproportionately affecting their right “to lead a normal private and family life”, a decision that the French Minister of Justice says he is surprised by.