Océane Théard 7:47 p.m., February 17, 2022

On the fourth day of the trial for the assassination of Father Jacques Hamel, the civil parties were called to the bar.

Starting with attack survivor Guy Coponet, 92, then Roseline Hamel, sister of Jacques Hamel.

And it was after this testimony that one of the defendants, Farid Khelil, cousin of one of the assailants, got up to ask his forgiveness.

He asked for forgiveness.

Just after the testimony of the civil parties on the fourth day of the trial for the assassination of Father Jacques Hamel, Farid Khelil, cousin of one of the assailants stood up to ask for his forgiveness.

The scene takes place after the testimony of Roselyne Hamel, sister of Jacques Hamel.

She has just told her older brother, her Jacques and the horror of July 26 when she learns of the hostage-taking in progress at the church of Saint Etienne du Rouvray.

And then her scream, long heartbreaking, that she pushes when she learns of the death of her big brother.

His story ends.

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"I never imagined that my cousin could attack your brother"

This is where Farid Khelil, black jogging jacket and ponytail suddenly rises.

The accused asks to speak.

Roseline Hamel approaches, stands in front of him, facing the box.

"I never imagined that my cousin could attack your brother. I think of you every day. If I could have done more to avoid this I would have done it. I apologize for this criminal negligence."

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Her blue eyes planted in his, Roseline Hamel replies: "I admit that, by sincerely doubting your sincerity, the words you have spoken do me good."

Apologies already pronounced this morning by the same accused against Guy Coponet, survivor of the attack, with sometimes almost identical turns of phrase.

But this time greeted with complete confidence by the 92-year-old survivor.

"An accused who asks for forgiveness and who is ready to shake your hand, that's great! We must keep hope".

Witnesses took the stand this afternoon.

Among them, nieces and great nieces of Father Hamel as well as the former mayor of Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray in office at the material time.

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