French women accuse this famous Islamic scholar of sexual attack

Paris, Oct 30: Two French women have accused Swiss-born renowned Islamic scholar Tariq Ramadan of sexually assaulting them a few years back, a media report said. This comes amid the ongoing outpouring by women reporting episodes of sexual harassment and naming their aggressors. French activist and author Henda Ayari filed a police complaint a week back accusing Ramadan, of the violent act in 2012, the New York Times reported. Then on Thursday, a second woman filed a complaint in Paris against Ramadan, accusing him of rape and assault in a hotel room in Lyon, France, in 2009. Ramadan's lawyer has issued a categorical denial about the first accusation and said that the scholar would sue his accuser for defamation. The explosive accounts came in the aftermath of accusations that powerful Hollywood film producer Harvey Weinstein had engaged in decades of sexual harassment and assaults against women like actress Rose McGowan and some 40 others. In the aftermath, many women, and some men, around the world added their voices to a wave of complaints on social media, including under the hashtag #MeToo, #BalanceTonPorc, or ExposeYourPig, in France. Among the figures accused by French women are Pierre Joxe, a former top Socialist leader and Minister under François Mitterrand.  A lawsuit alleging sexual harassment by Christophe Arend, a lawmaker in President Emmanuel Macron's governing party, has also been filed, the NYT report said. Ramadan, 55, is a revered Islamic scholar and the grandson of Hassan al-Banna, who founded the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt the 1920s.  The group has become one of the most influential transnational Sunni Muslim movements in the world. He teaches contemporary Islamic studies at Oxford University and is the author of a dozen books in English on modern Islam and the Western world.  

IANS