Geneva: Tariq Ramadan’s accuser wants justice

Geneva: Tariq Ramadan’s accuser wants justice
Geneva: Tariq Ramadan’s accuser wants justice

Tariq Ramadan’s accuser wants justice

Published today at 1:18 p.m. Updated 4 minutes ago

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The appeal trial of Islamologist Tariq Ramadan opened Monday in Geneva. The intellectual is accused of having raped and sexually coerced a woman in a room in a Geneva hotel in October 2008. He was acquitted at first instance.

The public prosecutor and the complainant appealed against this acquittal. The debates opened on Monday with the hearing of this 57-year-old woman, who claims to have been assaulted by Tariq Ramadan. “I appealed because the judgment did not bring me peace and I believe I did not obtain justice,” she declared.

The complainant who accuses Tariq Ramadan of having raped her in a hotel room in Geneva in October 2008, told the Geneva Criminal Appeal and Review Chamber on Monday how her life had been transformed in hell since she filed a complaint against the Islamologist in 2017.

Years of threats

“We endure the horror and we seek to rebuild ourselves. When we see that we can’t do it, we take legal action and it’s the steamroller,” declared the woman nicknamed “Brigitte” by the media. Questioned by the President of the Court on the estimation of her moral harm, the complainant stammered and burst into tears.

“Since the start of the procedure, I have discovered unimaginable things,” continued the complainant. She stressed that for years she had suffered threats and been defamed by people whose existence she was unaware of.

“I reported a rape and I am surprised not to have been recognized as a victim.” The complainant did not understand the acquittal of Tariq Ramadan pronounced a year ago by the Geneva Criminal Court, during the trial at first instance.

“I have a feeling of shame”

The fifty-year-old indicated that the violence she claims to have suffered disrupted her relationship with others. “I have a feeling of shame, a loss of self-confidence and I have nightmares.” It may be possible for him to overcome the trauma, “but this will largely depend on justice”.

Monday morning, the complainant was questioned by the Court on certain details of the case, in particular concerning messages that she allegedly posted on social networks about Tariq Ramadan and on a blog that she managed, entitled “go, run , steal and avenge us”, in reference to a quote from Le Cid by Corneille.

The accuser admitted to writing “compulsively” to Tariq Ramadan over a period of time. “I was mocked and said I was crazy.” The complainant, however, declared that she had no more exchanges with the Islamologist from February 2009, with the exception of an email in 2010.

The trial is scheduled until Wednesday.

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