French police have arrested two suspects in the murder of a French Jewish politician in a suburb of Paris, Haaretz reported Tuesday.
The politician, 73-year-old Alain Ghozland, was found dead last week at an apartment owned by his mother in Creitel.
Police traced DNA found at the crime scene to one of the suspects, while the other suspect's spare mobile phone revealed he had been at the site during the murder.
The suspects, aged 21 and 23, were arrested on Monday, have criminal records and have committed various crimes together in the past,” according to Haaretz. The autopsy revealed Ghozland was beaten all over his body, but was killed by suffocation.
Police sources said it is too early to determine whether the murder was motivated by anti-Semitism or whether it was strictly criminal.
Haaretz noted that Creteil, located about seven miles from the heart of Paris, was the site of a rape and robbery committed in December 2014 against a Jewish couple by robbers who said they were targeted because they were Jews.
Ghozland’s murder occurred shortly after an anti-Semitic attack in Marseilles, where a 15-year-old supporter of the Islamic State (ISIS) attacked a Jewish teacher with a machete, and later declared that he was “proud” of his actions.
The attack in Marseille is a reflection of the overall rise in anti-Semitic incidents throughout Europe and specifically in France. In 2014 alone, 164 violent anti-Semitic incidents occurred in France - more than any other European nation.