Prominent Jewish group the Simon Wiesenthal Centre has sent a letter to France’s interior minister to demand that a tiny hamlet south of Paris called “La Mort aux Juifs”, or “Death to Jews”, be renamed.
The group’s director of international affairs, Shimon Samuels, wrote to Bernard Cazeneuve saying he was “shocked to discover the existence of a village in France officially called ‘Death to Jews’.”
However, the deputy mayor of the village of Courtemaux — population 289 — which has jurisdiction over the hamlet located around 100 kilometres (60 miles) south of Paris, dismissed the concerns.
Changing the name would require a decision by the municipal council, which Secretand deemed unlikely.
In May, residents of a village in Spain with a similarly unfortunate name, Castrillo Matajudios (“Castrillo Kill Jews”), voted to change the name.
In a tight referendum, the citizens opted for the less offensive, older name for the town, Mota de Judios, or “Hill of the Jews”.