Blaze claim made
Last updated: 2004-08-23
Paris Centre destroyed
A statement posted on an Islamic website Monday, said a group calling itself Jamaat Ansar Al-Jihad al Islamiya was responsible for the attack. The statement called the action retaliation for the defiling of Muslim cemeteries in France and other anti-Muslim acts outside the country.
French President Jacques Chirac condemned the destruction of the center, and officials say those responsible face 20-year sentences if convicted.
France has suffered a wave of anti-Semitic violence in recent years, coinciding with rising tensions in the Middle East and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Story supplied by: VOAnews