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    Author Tariq Ramadan is seen during an interview with Reuters in New York April 8, 2010

    Twitter Lambasts Islamic Scholar Tariq Ramadan After His Arrest on Rape Charges

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    Paris police have detained Swiss-born Islamic scholar and Oxford University professor Tariq Ramadan over allegations of rape and sexual assault. Emphasizing that this was "huge news," Twitter users rushed to recall the controversial details of the scholar's academic career.

    French authorities confirmed Wednesday that Ramadan had been placed into custody. The academic, who has denied any wrongdoing, had complaints filed against him by two women in France over an alleged rape in 2009, and an alleged sexual assault in 2012. The scholar went on a leave of absence from Oxford over the complaints, where he serves as a professor of contemporary Islamic studies.

    Considered a leading authority on Islam in the West, Ramadan has written numerous books and articles on the subject, as well as the subject of Muslims' integration into Europe. However, his work has attracted its share of controversy over the years, and Twitter users were sure to point this out in their reaction to his arrest.

    Some users, including The Intercept journalist Glenn Greenwald, simply called the arrest "huge news."

    Others immediately recalled stories of Ramadan's suspected sympathies for the Muslim Brotherhood, and his family's long-standing affiliations with the group, which Egypt, Russia, and several other countries consider a terrorist group.

    Some users, recalling Ramadan's controversial defense of the practice of the stoning of women accused of adultery, wrote that his arrest was a "humiliating end" to his career. 

    Digging deeper, others recalled the fact that then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had personally intervened to overturn Ramadan's entry ban into the United States. The scholar had been barred from entry by the Bush administration in 2004 over his financial support for a charity accused of funding terrorists. 

    Some users, concerned over Ramadan's upcoming talk for the Islamic Institute for Development & Research, put pressure on the London-based think tank to cancel it.

    Finally, others simply said they hope to see some justice for the alleged victims.


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