A video posted online appeared to show two Muslim women in France being told to leave a restaurant by a man, reportedly the restaurant’s chef, who termed all Muslims “terrorists”.
“The terrorists are Muslim and all Muslims are terrorists… They recently killed a priest. This is a secular country and I have a right to an opinion,” the man said in the video released on Sunday. “People like you, I don’t want them here,” he continued, “you are imposing yourself here […] get out.”
The incident reportedly took place on the Saturday at the Le Cenacle restaurant, which is on the 2016 Michelin guide, located in Tremblay-en-France, an area in the suburbs of Paris.
The women, one of whom appeared in the video wearing a headscarf, said they would leave. “I do not wish to be served by a racist,” she is heard saying. The footage of the incident at the restaurant has been shared widely on social media.
On Sunday, members of the local Muslim community gathered outside the restaurant in protest, which led the man to eventually apologise and reveal that his friend was killed in the attack on the Bataclan in November, 2015. The CCIF (Committee Against Islamophobia in France) has issued a statement of support to the two women and pledged to give “emotional and legal support” to them.
“What kills me in the scandalous video #Cenacle is the indifference of other clients,” the committee’s director Marwan Muhammed said on Twitter. In a message on Twitter, Laurence Rossignol, the French minister for families, children and women’s rights said she had ordered an investigation and called for sanctions against the “intolerable behaviour” of the restaurant’s manager.
According to Le Parisien, the chef has now been interviewed by police on suspicion of enacting “racial discrimination.” He has since told local media, “I spoke out of turn and I apologise, I have a friend who died in the Bataclan attack and wrongly mixed everything up. I do not truly believe the things I said, my comments did not reflect what I really think.”
Some people took to Twitter to express their anger, starting the hashtag #Cenacle.
This article originally appeared on The Independent.