The terrorist who beheaded a French school teacher near Paris for showing cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed to his class has been given a hero’s funeral in his native Chechnya.
Footage shows mourners at the ceremony for Abdullakh Anzorov, 18, in his native village of Shalazi in the oil-rich Russian region.
The body of the killer who decapitated teacher Samuel Paty, and was lauded as a ‘lion of Islam’ at his funeral, had been returned from France on Saturday.
Anzorov was shot dead by French police minutes after the beheading in the Paris suburbs on October 16.
Some 200 people attended the Muslim funeral in snowy conditions, said BAZA media which reported Anzorov had been buried ‘with honours’.
Footage showed mourners chanting ‘Allahu Akbar’, meaning ‘God is great’, as they walked alongside the terrorist’s coffin.
His body was carried through the village by mourners in Urus-Martanovsky district. Entrances to Shalazi – population 5,330 – were sealed off by 65 police officers to stop others attending.
A street was unofficially named after the teenage terrorist, said reports.
Video of the mourners praying as they walked with Anzorov’s body was shared on a number of platforms. One carried a message lauding him as ‘The Lion of Islam’.
A message with the video read: ‘The Lion of Islam has arrived to native soil today, and returned to the soil. ‘No-one but Allah has strength and power.’
Paty, 47, was beheaded outside the gates of the college where he taught in Conflans-Sainte-Honorine, north of Paris.
The killing followed an online campaign from Muslim parents angry at him for showing cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed to students.
The teacher had used the cartoons from magazine Charlie Hebdo as part of a class on the importance of free speech.
Reports said he had asked Muslim students to leave the classroom before he displayed the cartoons in an attempt to avoid causing offence.
Last month three pupils were charged with identifying Paty to Anzorov before the beheading. Another was charged with lying the she had been present when he showed the cartoons.
The Chechen allegedly told pupils he wanted to ‘humiliate and strike’ Paty over the cartoons, seen as offensive by Muslims.
He apparently sent a video moments before the killing. This showed him holding a knife and gun.
Later he sent a message reading: ‘Say prayers for me, I will go through trials today and I hope that thanks to Allah’s help I will succeed.’
French president Emmanuel Macron said the slaughter was ‘a typical Islamist terrorist attack’, and that ‘our compatriot was killed for teaching children freedom of speech’.
Hardline leader of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov claimed Macron was ‘forcing people into terrorism….not leaving them any choice’ by justifying the cartoons.
Kadryov was unusually slapped down by the Kremlin, and told to keep out of foreign policy issues. The Chechen leader hit back defiantly, saying: ‘I cannot and will not silently watch atheists scoffing at religion.’