• France edition
 
Teenage victim of veil attack attempts suicide
File photo: A French police officer speaks with Muslim women during an identity check in Lille in 2012. Photo: Denis Charlet/AFP

Teenage victim of veil attack attempts suicide

Published: 27 Aug 2013 08:43 GMT+02:00
Updated: 27 Aug 2013 08:43 GMT+02:00

The teenager, who was attacked on August 12th by two men who threatened her with a box cutter before ripping off her veil, is in a "critical" condition at a hospital in the French capital.

According to Le Parisien newspaper, the teenager threw herself out a window at her family home in the suburb of Trappes, at around 7.30pm on Monday.

It is believed she had already made a previous unsuccessful attempt to commit suicide by taking an overdose of pills last week.

The motive for her actions is not clear. 

With tensions already high in the suburb of Trappes, which was the scene of violent clashes between youths and police last month, authorities feared the suicide attempt may spark further outbreaks of trouble.

Riot police were sent into Trappes on Monday evening and were stationed around the police station, the focal point of last month's violence. No outbreaks of disorder were reported, however.

On the day she was attacked, the teen victim told police she was leaving a friend’s house in Trappes at around 5.45pm  when two “European-looking” men confronted her near Square Berlioz.

The victim reported her assailants shouted racist and anti-Muslim insults at her before brandishing a boxcutter. She said they then tore off her veil, pushed her to the ground, and hit her.

"The first man started to touch my chest and then I managed to slap him, but then he punched me in the chest. He then took out a sharp object and started to cut my face with short, quick movements," the victim told The Huffington Post in the aftermath of the attack.

OPINION: France is having an identity crisis over Islam

The victim was saved when a third man intervened, and the attackers – one of whom was described as having a shaved head – fled the area by car.

She was driven to hospital in Trappes, in the department of Yvelines, where she was found to have “light scratch marks” on her face and throat, a source told French daily Le Parisien.

She reported the incident to local police the following day, who opened up an official investigation and are studying CCTV images and trying to track down any witnesses to the attack.

Investigators in Yvelines confirmed the girl had been attacked but according to Le Parisien newspaper had not been able to find any proof to back up her version of events. The police probe has been made more difficult by the fact that no eyewitness has come forward to help enquiries.

It was not clear whether the victim was wearing a headscarf, known as a hijab, or a full-face veil, known as a niqab, which was banned from being worn in public in France in 2011.

French Interior Minister Manuel Valls condemned the attack at the time, expressing his “indignation” to French television BFMTV.

“I severely condemn this newest demonstration of anti-Muslim hatred and intolerance,” Valls said.

Ben McPartland (ben.mcpartland@thelocal.com)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
France plan air lifts to help fight Ebola
Liberian Red Cross health workers, wearing protective suits, carry the body of a 18-old-month baby, victim of the Ebola virus in Monrovia. AFP Photo/Zoom Dosso

France plan air lifts to help fight Ebola

France and Germany will send military transport planes to West Africa to help efforts to contain the Ebola epidemic, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and military officials said on Friday. READ  

Moody's keeps France on negative outlook
Credit ratings agency Moody's said that France till has significant credit strengths. Photo: Joel Saget/AFP

Moody's keeps France on negative outlook

Moody's maintained its negative rating on France on Friday but -- despite earlier reports -- did not deal the struggling economy a downgrade. READ  

Air France strike to continue another week
Air France pilots have voted to continue their strike for another week. Photo: AFP

Air France strike to continue another week

Air France pilots voted on Friday to extend their strike for another week, while management has showed no signs of compromising, according to French media reports. Roughly half of the flagship carrier's flights have remained grounded due to the action. READ  

‘Red tape France’ tops UN e-efficiency list
France apparently isn't the world capital of red tape. Photo: Department for Communities and Local Government/Flickr

‘Red tape France’ tops UN e-efficiency list

France, notorious for its jungle of red-tape, has apparently been undersserving of some of that criticism. A new report ranks France as the best country in Europe when it comes to online government services. READ  

Sarkozy announces his return to French politics
Nicolas Sarkozy is back in French politics. Photo: AFP

Sarkozy announces his return to French politics

In a long-expected announcement, Nicolas Sarkozy said he will return to French politics with a bid for his party's presidency, which many believe is the first step toward a run at France's top elected office. READ  

Paris installs new device to stop 'love lock' craze
The days of the love locks craze in Paris may be numbered. Photo: AFP

Paris installs new device to stop 'love lock' craze

'Love locks' have become such a problem in Paris the city has just installed panels intended to block couples from latching their passion to the town's infrastracture, leaving it straining under a dangerous load. READ  

Paris cabby dies in vicious high-heel attack
Photo: Heel: Shutterstock

Paris cabby dies in vicious high-heel attack

A Paris taxi driver has died after angry passengers beat and stabbed him with stiletto high heel shoes during a drunken night out in the French capital. READ  

France launches first bombing runs on Isis
France got praise from US President Barack Obama for its decision to bomb Isis militants. Photo: Jean-Luc Brunet/AFP

France launches first bombing runs on Isis

France launched its first airstrikes on Friday against the Isis militants who have seized swathes of Iraq and Syria. Word of the bombing came less than 24 hours after French President François Hollande promised military action. READ  

French crook fakes his funeral to escape cops
The reports of one French crook's death were, it turns out, greatly exaggerated. Photo: Graves: Shutterstock

French crook fakes his funeral to escape cops

A wanted French criminal crafted a detailed plan to fake his own death, but there was just one problem: the police turned up at his 'funeral'. READ  

French leaders relieved by Scotland's 'No' vote
French leaders heaved a sigh of relief over Scotland's 'no' vote. Photo: Andy Buchanan/AFP

French leaders relieved by Scotland's 'No' vote

There was plenty of relief in France's political classes on Friday after Scottish voters decisively rejected independence from the United Kingdom. One top minister said a 'yes ' vote would have hurt the European Union. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Marks & Spencer
Sponsored Article
Fashion Ladies of the Local: Win a New Autumn Look
National
Ten great bars in Paris only locals know about
Society
France's top expat tribes: Which are you?
National
France to set flat-rate for Paris airport taxis
Politics
French separatists want Scots to say 'yes'
National
Anti-dog poo offensive launched in French town
National
Scammers attack Paris's top cop at tourist hotspot
National
French leader didn't pay his rent for three years
National
'WW2 bomb' kills camper on French island
Does France have a racism problem?
National
National
'Enough gloom, France is an amazing country'
Gallery
The top ten tourist traps to avoid in France
Politics
The juiciest bits from Trierweiler's tell-all book
Politics
Trierweiler tells all: 'Hollande wanted me back, at any price'
Education
'Sacre bleu!' Do the French really say that?
Politics
Manuel Valls has plenty in common with Tony Blair, but not background
International
Votes for expats: Plan to end UK's 15-year rule
Gallery
Ten dos and don'ts for keeping your French in-laws happy
National
Unemployment: How does France compare to Europe?
International
Are all the talented professionals really leaving France?
National
La France profonde: Is it a rural idyll or a backwater hell?
Travel
Check out the four new attractions coming to Paris this autumn
Gallery
The French words you can't translate literally
National
Ten things you need to know about France's economics whizzkid
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se