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Geneva launches Ramadan school probe

Tariq Ramadan
Ramadan faces several allegations of serious sexual assault Keystone

Canton Geneva authorities have called in two experts to conduct an external investigation into accusations of sexual misconduct alleged to have been perpetrated by Swiss academic Tariq Ramadan against pupils he taught in local schools.  

The role of the canton’s education department in the affair will also be probed following allegations that some students had raised the alarm between 1984 and 2004 when the Islamic scholar taught in the area.

Ramadan is currently in prison in Paris facing three accusations of rape. In November a Swiss newspaper reported allegations of sexual abuse and misconduct by four unnamed Swiss women. He denies the allegations and is currently on leave of absence from Oxford University.

The Geneva investigation has been launched in the wake of mounting public pressure for answers. Earlier this month, a letter signed by some well-known figures in the French-speaking part of Switzerland was sent to the cantonal authorities demanding that action be taken.

The education department said it could not launch an internal inquiry as Ramadan no longer held a post in Geneva. A preliminary report from the newly formed external inquiry is expected towards the end of this year. 

The two investigators are being granted access to all relevant documents relating to the case, while current and former education department employees would be released from confidentiality obligations, the authorities said.

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