Gérald Darmanin calls for the Pantin Mosque to be reopened

The essentials In a tweet this Monday evening, March 15, the Minister of the Interior called for the reopening of the Pantin Mosque following the resignation of his Rector M’hammed Henniche.

Gérald Darmanin called for the reopening of the Pantin Mosque (Seine-Saint-Denis) on Monday after the resignation of his rector M’hammed Henniche, whom the interior minister called for.

The association that manages the Pantin Mosque has changed its leaders. I ask @ Prefet93 to get in touch with the new team to consider reopening the mosque as soon as possible. I also thank the action of the Mayor of Pantin.

– Gérald DARMANIN (@GDarmanin), March 15, 2021

“The association that manages the Pantin mosque has changed its leaders. I ask the Prefect of” Seine-Saint-Denis “to contact the new team in order to consider reopening the mosque as soon as possible “wrote the minister on Twitter who had obtained the closure of this place of worship for six months on October 21 after the assassination of Professor Samuel Paty.

M’hammed Henniche, who has headed the Muslim Pantin Federation since 2013 and was recently re-elected, announced on Sunday that he had presented his resignation the day before to the board of the mosque, which decided to replace him with Dramé Abderrahman. The closure of this mosque, with around 1,300 worshipers, had been decided on the basis of the disclosure of a video of a student’s father on his Facebook page to the origin of the equipment that led to the beheading of Samuel Paty.

Activities that “violate public order”

Since this sanction and two appeals rejected in court, Gérald Darmanin had conditioned an early reopening of the mosque for the dismissed departures of M’hammed Henniche and Imam Ibrahim Doucouré. The Prefect of Seine-Saint-Denis, Georges-François Leclerc, also withdrew from the association that gives the mosque its cultic character in November because its activities “violated public order”, according to a post consulted by AFP.

This measure invalidated the allocation of a (very long-term) subordinate lease contract by the city of Pantin for the construction of the future large mosque, which was financed by donations from the faithful with almost one million euros. M’hammed Henniche, who has always denied the Islamist leanings attributed to him by the government, has decided to step down in order to “save the emphatic lease of the new mosque” and “so that the faithful can find its mosque,” which was to be reopened scheduled for April 15th.

M’hammed Henniche, a 50-year-old Muslim conservative, an entrepreneur by profession, was a privileged interlocutor with public authorities, including Nicolas Sarkozy when he was president, for twenty years. He retains his duties as Secretary General of the Union of Muslim Associations of Seine-Saint-Denis (UAM 93).