We need your help now

Support from readers like you keeps The Journal open.

You are visiting us because we have something you value. Independent, unbiased news that tells the truth. Advertising revenue goes some way to support our mission, but this year it has not been enough.

If you've seen value in our reporting, please contribute what you can, so we can continue to produce accurate and meaningful journalism. For everyone who needs it.

Mistaken Identity

Woman seen in tabloid bubble bath photo is NOT suspected Paris jihadi

Moroccan woman Nabila Bakkatha said a former friend sold the image out of revenge.

A WOMAN WHO was identified as a “suicide bomber” linked to the Paris attackers in a number of international newspapers is not, in fact, the suspected female jihadi who died in a police raid last week.

The Daily Mail, which first ran the photo, claimed it showed alleged terrorist Hasna Ait Boulahcen taking a steamy bubble bath.

The image was then picked up by several other media outlets, including the New York Post, which captioned it: “Rub a dub dub … Thug in a tub”.

But it turns out that the woman in the picture is an innocent Moroccan who is still very much alive.

Nabila Bakkatha told CNN that the photo was sold by a former friend she had fallen out with, and that she has no involvement in terrorism.

“The photograph was taken by my friend, who sold it to a French journalist after the Paris attacks in revenge,” she said.

“Three days ago, another friend called me saying that my photographs are … on the front pages of a number of international newspapers.”

Another photo showing Bakkatha with her family was also published by a number of international media outlets.

Most of the stories that carried the images have now been updated with corrections, but the damage is already done, she feels.

“My family was shocked, and some of my relatives are not talking to me anymore … My life changed drastically,” Bakkatha told CNN.

I stopped going to work, and I cannot go out anymore as I live in continuous fear.

Read: Brussels to stay on lockdown for a week as PM says attack threat still “imminent”

Read: The Paris attackers – here’s what we know so far

Readers like you are keeping these stories free for everyone...
A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article. Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.

Your Voice
Readers Comments
    Submit a report
    Please help us understand how this comment violates our community guidelines.
    Thank you for the feedback
    Your feedback has been sent to our team for review.