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Bataclan Forcefully Denies Jesse Hughes’ Accusations Against Venue Security

PARIS, FRANCE - NOVEMBER 16: A French police officer stands guard in front of the main entrance of Bataclan concert hall as the cordon is lifted following Fridays terrorist attacks on November 16, 2015 in Paris, France. A Europe-wide one-minute silence was held at 12pm CET today in honour of at least 129 people who were killed last Friday in a series of terror attacks in the French capital. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

Update: Hughes has issued a formal apology. Read it in full below.

I humbly beg forgiveness from the people of France, the staff and security of the Bataclan, my fans, family, friends and anyone else hurt or offended by the absurd accusations I made in my Fox Business Channel interview. My suggestions that anyone affiliated with the Bataclan played a role in the events of November 13 are unfounded and baseless—and I take full responsibility for them. They do not reflect opinions of my bandmates or anyone associated with Eagles of Death Metal. The shame is 100% mine. I’ve been dealing with non-stop nightmares and struggling through therapy to make sense of this tragedy and insanity. I haven’t been myself since November 13. I realize there’s no excuse for my words, but for what it’s worth: I am sincerely sorry for having hurt, disrespected or accused anyone.

The owners of the Parisian venue the Bataclan have refuted Eagles of Death Metal frontman Jesse Hughes’ “insane” claims that venue security “had a reason not to show up” on November 13, 2015, when terrorists killed 130 people in a string of coordinated strikes across the city. Eagles of Death Metal were performing that night at the Bataclan, where 89 people were killed.

“Jesse Hughes spread some very grave and defamatory accusations against the Bataclan teams,” the venue responded in a statement, as reported by Variety“A judicial investigation is undergoing. We wish to let justice proceed serenely. All the testimonies gathered to this day demonstrate the professionalism and courage of the security agents who were on the ground on November 13. Hundreds of people were saved thanks to [these agents’] intervention.”

Hughes made the controversial claim in an interview on Fox Business Network Wednesday. “When I first got to the venue and walked in, I walked past the dude who was supposed to be the security guard for the backstage. He didn’t even look at me. I immediately went to the promoter and said, ‘Who’s that guy? I want to put another dude on,’ and he goes, ‘well some of the other guards aren’t here yet,’ and eventually I found out that six or so wouldn’t show up at all,” Hughes told network commentator Kennedy.

“It seems rather obvious they had a reason not to show up,” he continued, insinuating that Bataclan staff might have known something. Last month, Hughes attracted attention by speaking out against France’s gun control laws, suggesting the tragedy could have been averted if more bystanders were armed.

The Bataclan is currently closed for renovations, but is expected to reopen at the end of the year.