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Mali refuses to accept body of French terrorist

Ben McPartland · 22 Jan 2015, 10:07

Published: 22 Jan 2015 10:07 GMT+01:00

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The body of Coulibaly, the man whose victims were a French police woman and four Jewish people was due to be repatriated to Mali, the country where he was born.

But at the last minute Malian authorities blocked the move, according to French newspaper Le Parisien.

The reason for the about-turn was not made clear, but it looks certain that Coulibaly will now be buried somewhere in France, although local authorities may raise objections.

The body of the 32-year-old terrorist will remain at a forensics institute near Paris, where he has laid since he was gunned down by police in a dramatic end to the siege at the Hyper Cacher on January 9th.

The case of Coulibaly is similar to that of Toulouse terrorist Mohamed Merah.

After his death in a shoot-out with police in March 2012 Algeria refused to accept his body for burial and he ended up being interred in a cemetery near Toulouse.

The Kouachi brother Said and Cherif, who were behind the attack on Charlie Hebdo were buried in an unmarked grave at the weekend.

Cherif Kouachi, one of two brothers who killed 12 people in the attack on the satirical weekly March 7th, was buried just before midnight Saturday in a cemetery in Gennevilliers, a day after his older brother Said was discreetly buried in the northeastern city of Reims.

Story continues below…

Cherif's family, including his widow, kept away from the funeral, the mayor's office said, and the grave was left anonymous to avoid it becoming "a pilgrimage site" for Islamists.

The mayor of Gennevilliers, where the younger Kouachi brother Cherif lived and was buried, had not wanted the funeral to go ahead, but said he had no legal means to block it.

Ben McPartland (ben.mcpartland@thelocal.com)

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