Death of Françoise Rudetzki, tireless spokesperson for the victims of attacks


“Fexceptional woman” having put her life at the service of the victims of terrorism after being herself seriously injured during an attack in 1983, Françoise Rudetzki died on the night of Tuesday to Wednesday in Paris, at 73 years old, a we learned Wednesday from his family.

“Until the end, she campaigned for the recognition and care of victims of attacks,” said her daughter Deborah Rudetzki, contacted by AFP.

The President of the Republic Emmanuel Macron hailed on Twitter the “life of pain, battles and victories” of “a tutelary figure for all the victims of attacks”, who drew “his sensitivity from his personal history”.

A lawyer, Françoise Rudetzki had created SOS Attentats, the first association for the defense of victims of acts of terrorism, in December 1985, the date marking the start of a wave of deadly attacks linked to the conflict in the Middle East.

As early as 1986, it obtained the creation of the Guarantee Fund for victims of acts of terrorism, financed by a small levy on each property insurance contract, a guarantee extended in 1990 to all victims of criminal offenses ( rape, assault, robbery).

She remained a “member of the board of directors” of this organization “until her death”, her family said in a press release.

Other advances, it had the victims of terrorism recognized the status of civilian victims of war and the possibility for associations to file civil suits during the trials.

Françoise Rudetzki had also worked to have a memorial erected for all the victims of terrorism. This monument, an anonymous decapitated woman, will be inaugurated by Jacques Chirac at the Invalides, in Paris, in 1998.

In 2018, she defended the creation of a National Resource and Resilience Center (CN2R), intended to improve the care of victims of traumatic events.

“Pugnacity”

Born in Neuilly-sur-Seine in 1948 to parents who had survived the Second World War, Françoise Rudetzki was the victim of a bomb attack on December 23, 1983 at the Grand Véfour restaurant, under the arcades of the Palais-Royal, in Paris, where she celebrated her tenth anniversary with her husband. The explosion had thrown a metal door which had crushed the legs of the young businesswoman.

Operated on dozens of times to treat her injuries, she had contracted HIV and the hepatitis C virus during a transfusion. She had recounted this ordeal in a biography published in 2004, “Triple sorrow” (Calmann-Lévy), alluding to the attack, its contamination, long killed, and the disappearance of part of her family in the Shoah, drama that surfaced during his hospitalization.

“At that time, we never talked about the victims,” ​​Françoise Rudetzki later told AFP. “The word + victim + was a bit like a word that should not be pronounced and only the doctors took care of the victims”.

Subsequently, court reporters will often come across this elegant woman with brown curls at the hearings of the Paris courthouse, where she moved around using crutches, then in an electric wheelchair.

“We measure the loss that this will represent for the victims”, underlined Frédéric Bibal, lawyer for several dozen victims of the attacks of November 13, 2015, announcing his death at the trial of these attacks, which is currently taking place in Paris. .

The Life for Paris association, which brings together many victims of these attacks, hailed in a press release the “unique greatness of soul” of this “exceptional woman”, who “made it possible to make France an example support for victims” and provided “fundamental assistance” to the association in its early days.

Woman with “inexhaustible energy” despite “her physical difficulties”, “her last great cause” was “that the victims of natural disasters can also be well compensated”, told AFP the president of this association, Arthur Again.

She was also a member of the prefiguration mission of the terrorism memorial museum which should see the light of day in 2027 and which “was particularly close to her heart”, he added.

“His voice will not be extinguished”, assured on Twitter the Keeper of the Seals Eric Dupond-Moretti, while Frédérique Calendra, interministerial delegate for victim assistance, praised his “pugnacity” and his “enthusiasm” in his fights. “His ambition must be our legacy and our compass,” she added.

His funeral will take place in the strictest family privacy, said his relatives.

05/18/2022 19:56:14 – Paris (AFP) – © 2022 AFP

Death of Françoise Rudetzki, tireless spokesperson for the victims of attacks