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Tariq Ramadan: French police question Muslim scholar over rape claims

01 February 2018

The Swiss-born academic, 55, answered a summons to report to Paris police who are conducting a preliminary investigation.

He denies the claims and says that he has started legal action against the women for libel. He is president of the thinktank European Muslim Network in Brussels and teaches at Britain's Oxford University.

Soon after, Ramadan was accused of making sexual advances on four women who studied under him as teenagers in Geneva.

The senior research fellow of St. Antony's College was accused in November of rape by French author Henda Ayari.

"Many people are angry because I denounced someone whom people respect a lot", Ayari told The New York Times in October. He "strangled me... I really thought I was dying, I was certain tonight that if I kept pushing him he would kill me". "For me, he was something like a saint".

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She had detailed the encounter in a book published a year ago, without naming her alleged attacker.

Swiss national Ramadan is considered an influential figure among Muslim scholars, but also a controversial one.

In November another woman, a convert to Islam who has remained anonymous, accused him of raping her in 2009.

The allegations against Ramadan emerged in the aftermath of similar accusations made against Hollywood film producer Harvey Weinstein, which emboldened dozens of women to come forward their own with stories of sexual harassment and assault.

Ramadan, whose grandfather founded the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, has taken a leave of absence from his post as a professor of contemporary Islamic studies at Oxford University.

Tariq Ramadan: French police question Muslim scholar over rape claims