Police have opened an investigation after a memorial to a Holocaust survivor who became a women’s rights activist and politician was defaced three times in one week.
In the latest incident, the stone memorial commemorating Simone Veil was defaced with swastikas, police said on Wednesday, AFP reported.
The defacement of the monument located in Peros Guirec in western Brittany was thought to have taken place Wednesday morning.
The memorial, which was unveiled in 2017, had been targeted two other times in the last week, including being smeared with mustard and excrement, reported the Ouest-France newspaper.
"Simone Veil is a French and global figure in women's rights, Europe and the fight against anti-Semitism," France’s junior interior minister Marlene Schiappa said on Twitter.
"To deface her memorial is to deface France! These heinous acts must not go unpunished," she tweeted.
The hateful graffiti has since been removed from the monument.
Veil was a scholar, judge, feminist activist and minister of health who in 2012 was awarded France’s highest honor,
A lawyer by education, Veil served as minister of health under the center-right government of Valery Giscard d’Estaing and later as president of the European Parliament, as well as a member of the Constitutional Council of France.
Born in Nice, Veil was imprisoned at Auschwitz but managed to escape the Nazi death camp. She published a best-selling autobiography in 2007 titled “A Life.” The following year, she was admitted to the Academie Francaise — a highly prestigious institution comprising individuals, often philosophers and writers, recognized for scholarly excellence.
Veil died in 2017 at the age of 89.