There was a very proactive picture of a young woman bathing in bath tub that was seen worldwide who was identified as a terrorist. But we now know that Nabila Bakkatha, the woman in that photo, is still very much alive. Meanwhile, Hasna Ait Boulahcen, the alleged terrorist was killed in the raids on the outskirts of Paris.
In reality, the woman in the photos is not Aitboulahcen, who police believe was working with the terrorists, but a woman who is from Moroccan and who was the victim of mistaken identity.
According to France 24 the over nine photos of her, including one showing her in a bubble bath, were first published by British tabloid the Daily Mail on November 19 and quickly picked up by other media outlets and shared on social media.
Nabila, who lives in Béni Mellal in Morocco and works as a driving instructor was stunned to see the pictures everywhere she went on TV , in newspapers and online. In a video interview with the news website Alyaoum24, Nabila said that the tub photo was sold to a journalist by a former friend. She believes that the photo of her and her friends was taken from her Facebook page.
“Those are definitely my photos but I have nothing to do with that woman [Aitboulahcen]. They were taken at my friend’s house in France. That particular friend is a jealous person and she and I fell out recently. Her name is Fouzia. She was taking medication, and she’s a psychopath. She sold my photos to a journalist, who published the photos, claiming that they were of Hasna Aitboulahcen.”
In the Alyaoum24 interview, Nabila describes the horror of seeing her photo mistakenly published by media outlets all over the world.
“People keep calling me. I hope that the authorities help me find some kind of solution. I’m scared and I don’t know what to do. I’m living in fear. Seeing your own photo published in an article about a terrorist is shocking.”
The Daily Mail is also at the heart of another scandal in France. On Monday night, French TV channel Canal+ published a hidden camera video showing the owner of a Parisian restaurant trying to sell surveillance footage from the night of the November 13 attacks. The footage shows jihadists shooting his customers in his restaurant, the Casa Nostra. The negotiations lasted for 12 hours, before he sold it for 50,000 euros – to the Daily Mail.
The day after the French police raid on an apartment in St. Denis, media sources wrongly described Aitboulahcen as a suicide bomber. On November 20, police sources explained that the young woman did not blow herself up. Instead, she was killed when an unidentified jihadist set off a bomb in the apartment. The authorities believe she was well aware of her cousin’s implication in the Paris attacks and that she “helped him in his escape”, according to the Paris city prosecutor.