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Attacks 'disaster' for French intelligence: Wiesenthal Center
[LOS ANGELES] The jihadist attacks on satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo and a Jewish store have exposed French intelligence and security failings, the Simon Wiesenthal Center human rights organization said Friday.
Rabbi Marvin Hier, founder and dean of the Los Angeles-based center, added that thousands of local imams in France should be speaking out more against extremism in the Muslim community.
Speaking after four hostages were killed at a Jewish store in Paris along with three hostage takers including two alleged Charlie Hebdo gunman, he said French authorities must also clearly do more.
"They should certainly be doing more in finding out who is coming into the country .. obviously it's been a disaster for them," he told AFP, referring notably to jihadists returning from places like Syria.
"How did they get in the country? They didn't just fly in from the sky." Hier said there were about 6,000 imams who had a great influence on Muslims in France.
"They should not be allowed to get off the hook," he said.
"If they are the ones who are inspiring people, that this is what God wants ... that he likes these killings, then the French society should know about that." And he declared that the world can no longer pretend that Islamist fundamentalists consist of a few isolated cells. "We're not dealing with a few hundred jihadists. We're dealing with millions," he alleged.