Muslim scholar questioned by French police over rape claims

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Prominent Muslim academic Tariq Ramadan is being questioned by French police investigating allegations of rape and sexual assault against him. His detention comes in the wake of a preliminary investigation opened previous year after two women filed police complaints against him, accusing him of rape.

Ramadan denies the allegations, and his lawyers have accused the women of colluding to disgrace him.

Tariq Ramadan is a world-renowned academic and teaches at Oxford UniversityWho is Tariq Ramadan?

Ramadan took a leave of absence from Oxford in November after two women, including French author Henda Ayari, filed complaints in France for alleged rape. He is the grandson of Hassan al-Banna, who founded the Muslim Brotherhood in the 1920s.

A regular panellist on TV debates with two million Facebook followers, Ramadan has been accused by secular critics of promoting a political form of Islam.

The victim claimed the professor "pounced on me like a wild animal" after she went to tell him she admired his work.

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He says all allegations are part of a "campaign of slander" by enemies.

She said Ramadan raped her in his hotel room, telling Le Parisien newspaper: "He choked me so hard that I thought I was going to die".

Ramadan denies all accusations against him and maintains his innocence on all charges.

Another woman, who has remained unnamed in news reports, accused Ramadan of raping and beating her in a hotel room during a 2009 conference in Lyon, France.

"These accusations are simply false, and betray all the ideals I have long strived for and believed in", he wrote.