Why not? Unless she was in sympathy with what he did and wanted him to continue his jihad. Oh, and where did he get the money for all those weapons? “Lawyer: Mother of French Islamist gunman released without charge; brother remains in custody,” by Raphael Satter for The Associated Press, March 24 (thanks to Kenneth):
PARIS – Authorities investigating France’s deadly shooting rampage have released the mother of the Islamist fanatic blamed for the killings but were questioning his older brother to determine whether he served as an accomplice, officials said Saturday.
Police are trying to determine whether 23-year-old Mohamed Merah had any help in carrying out the execution-style murders of seven people that have shocked France and refocused attention on the threat of radical Muslim terrorists. Police say there is evidence to suggest that his brother worked as an assistant.
Merah’s brother, Abdelkader, was flown to Paris for further questioning Saturday, along with his girlfriend, but a lawyer for Merah’s mother, 55-year-old Zoulhika Aziri, said she had been released without charge. Jean-Yves Gougnaud told reporters in the southern French city of Toulouse that Aziri’s world had been “turned upside down.”
“She is devastated,” he told reporters after her release. “At no time could she have imagined that her son was the one who did it.”
Aziri was freed late Friday from a police station in Toulouse, a judicial official said on condition of anonymity because the information wasn’t cleared for public release.
Mohamed Merah, who claimed allegiance to al-Qaida, died in a hail of gunfire Thursday after a dramatic 32-hour standoff with police at his apartment in Toulouse. At one point, police brought his mother to the scene, but she refused to urge her son to surrender, officials said.
Merah had filmed himself carrying out attacks in southern France that began March 11 and killed three Jewish schoolchildren, a rabbi and three French paratroopers with close-range shots to the head, prosecutors say. Another Jewish student and a paratrooper were wounded, and five police officers were injured trying to dislodge Merah from the apartment.
The killings stunned France and upended the campaign for presidential elections starting next month. President Nicolas Sarkozy held an emergency meeting with his prime minister and top security and intelligence officials Saturday.
Key questions include how Merah, described by French intelligence boss Ange Mancini as “a little failure from the suburbs,” was able to amass an arsenal of weapons “” including an Uzi sub-machinegun “” and rent a car, despite having no clear source of income….