Lifestyle & Belief

Mother of 'I am a bomb' boy, Jihad, appears in French court


Lawyer Gaelle Genoun (R) leaves Avignon's courthouse on December 19, 2012, with her client, the mother of a 3-year old named Jihad who was born on September 11, who went on trial for sending him to school in a top with 'I am a bomb' written on it.



She named her 3-year-old son Jihad, then sent him to nursery school in a T-shirt that read "I am a bomb."

Now the Frenchwoman and her brother, the boy's uncle, have appeared in a French court to answer criminal charges.

Jihad's long-sleeved shirt also had the words "Jihad, born on September 11" on the back when he turned up at his nursery school in the southern town of Sorgues near Avignon on Sept. 25, Agence France-Presse reported.

France was earlier this year rocked by a mass shooting in Toulous in the country's southwest, with seven people killed by a young, self-declared Islamist of Algerian descent.

Mohammed Merah, 23, who described himself as a mujahedeen (holy warrior), had links to strict Salafi Islam and jihadist movements, an intelligence official told French newspaper Libération in march.

More from GlobalPost: Profile of Mohammed Merah, Toulouse shooting suspect

Meanwhile, Al Qaeda-liked Islamists in Mali have threatened to "open the doors of hell" on French citizens over a US resolution proposed by France that calls for a plan to oust the militants from the North African nation, the Associated Press reported

Despite this, according to AFP, Jihad's mother was "astonished" at the reaction to her son's T-shirt.

The mother and uncle were not known Islamists, prosecutors reportedly said.

However, a few after Jihad's teacher alerted the authorities after he turned up in the top T-shirt, conservative UMP party and town mayor, Thierry Lagneau, asked prosecutors to investigate.

Lagneau said:

"I condemn the attitude of the parents who shamefully took advantage of the person and the age of this child to convey a political message."

The pair were charged with condoning a crime over the alleged reference to the 9/11 attacks in New York and Washington in 2001.

However, the judge agreed to postpone the trial until March 6 for technical reasons.

The pair made no comment to reporters as they left the courthouse with her brother.