In Brief: Paris mayor strips Abbas of honour over Holocaust remarks, CC BY 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons

The Mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, stripped Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas of the Grand Vermeil medal after her office said he “justified the extermination of the Jews of Europe” in World War II.

Ms Hidalgo, of the Socialist Party’ sent Abbas a letter stating that “the comments you made are contrary to our universal values and the historical truth of the Shoah,” adding that “you can therefore no longer hold this distinction.”

This comes after Abbas suggested Hitler had Jews slaughtered because of their “social role” as moneylenders, and said it was “not true” that “Hitler killed the Jews because they were Jews.”

He continued, suggesting “the [Europeans] fought against these people because of their role in society, which had to do with usury, money and so on and so forth,” he continued.

Britain’s foreign ministry also condemned the Palestinian Authority president’s remarks, saying that “the UK stands firmly against all attempts to distort the Holocaust. Such statements do not advance efforts towards reconciliation.”