The body of the Mohamed Merah, the al-Qaeda-inspired gunman who went on a killing spree in Toulouse, has been buried in a small ceremony on the outskirts of the city.
The mayor of Toulouse, Pierre Cohen, had initially refused a permit for the burial of the 23-year-old of Algerian origin, but he later reluctantly backed down.
The killer had filmed himself on a shooting spree in the city, during which he shot and killed three soldiers, three Jewish children, and a rabbi at point blank range. He was later gunned down himself in a stand off with the police.
Speaking of the funeral arrangements which have been mired in controversy, Cohen said:
“This solution is inappropriate, I think I have shown for ten days that I wanted no controversy or bitterness, but I think we are a country that will take some time to digest what happened in Toulouse in terms of killing, in terms of suffering.”
Some, including Merah’s father, had pushed for Mohamed to be buried in his family home of Bezzaz in Algeria, but the Algerian government refused permission.
Merah’s father says he wants to sue the French government for killing his son.