Brussels May Be Lying About Museum Shootings, Professor Claims

Tariq Ramadan Claims Victims Were Israeli Secret Agents

Shock and Dismay: Belgian officials gather outside the Jewish Museum in Brussels after a shooting attack killed three, including an Israeli couple.
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Shock and Dismay: Belgian officials gather outside the Jewish Museum in Brussels after a shooting attack killed three, including an Israeli couple.

By JTA

Published May 30, 2014.
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A Swiss professor wrote on Facebook that Belgian officials may be part of a conspiracy to falsely present the Brussels Jewish museum shootings as anti-Semitic.

Tariq Ramadan, a Geneva-based lecturer on Contemporary Islamic issues at Oxford University in Britain, speculated on Tuesday that the slaying of four people last week at the Jewish Museum of Belgium was a deliberate attack on Israeli secret agents.

Ramadan was for a time been banned from entering the United States for financial contributions he made to Hamas fronts. Ramadan denied knowing that the charities were Hamas fronts and the ban has been removed.

“The two tourists targeted in Brussels worked for the Israeli secret services,” Ramadan wrote, citing media reports.

“The [Belgian] government does not comment,” Ramadan wrote. “Coincidence. Is this a case of anti-Semitism or a maneuver to divert attention from the real motives of the executioners? We oppose all slaying of innocents and racism but at the same time, it’s time they stopped taking us for fools.”

An unidentified shooter killed two Israeli tourists, Enamuel and Mira Riva, and two museum staffers, Alexandre Strens and Dominique Sabrier.

Belgian Interior Minister Joelle Milquet and French President Francois Hollande said they believed the attack was anti-Semitic.

On Monday, the Israeli daily Haaretz published an analysis on the shooting titled “The Brussels Jewish museum shooting: score-settling or coincidence?”

In it, columnist Amir Oren wrote that the two Israelis were former government employees. Emanuel Riva worked as an accountant for Nativ, a government body which facilitates immigration from the former Soviet Union, and the ministry of finance. His wife worked as an accountant for the Israeli Prime Minister’s Office.

Oren suggested Mira Riva’s real employer was the Mossad, although another Israeli journalist known for his deep sources in the intelligence establishment, Yossi Melman, wrote in the Jerusalem Post that such a conclusion was purely speculative.

Oren wrote that “there was no reason for a hostile country like Iran or an enemy organization like Hezbollah to target either Riva in Brussels,” but added: “Still, perhaps the murder in Brussels was no ‘hate crime’ or ‘anti-Semitic attack’ but a deliberate assassination. This possible hypothesis is supported by the documentation of the killer’s actions. The cameras recorded what seems like professional score-settling.”

The footage shows a man producing an automatic rifle from a bag, entering the museum with it and then fleeing the scene on foot.

On Thursday, the United Nations Security Council issued a condemnation of the shootings, which said the council’s 15 member states “strongly condemned all forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance, especially against an institution whose mission has always been to promote openness and tolerance.”

Following the attack, Antwerp police deployed a force of 200 police with automatic rifles around Jewish institutions, the Jewish Joods Actueel news site reported.


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