PARIS - Agence France-Presse
A picture taken on March 9, 1997 in Teheran, shows controversial French philosopher Roger Garaudy. AFP photo
Roger Garaudy, a French
communist intellectual who denied that the Nazis used gas chambers to kill Jews during World War II, has died aged 98, officials said Friday.
Garaudy was fined 120,000 francs (18,000 dollars) by a Paris
court in 1998 for his anti-Zionist work "The Founding Myths of Israeli Politics" which was found to have distorted the wartime deaths of an estimated six million Jews.
He died on Wednesday in the Paris
suburb of Chennevieres, local officials said.
Garaudy, who was born into a Protestant family before converting to Catholicism and later to Islam, joined the French
resistance and was held in Algeria as a prisoner of war of France's collaborationist Vichy regime. He joined the French
Communist Party after the war and was elected to the French
parliament and became a member of the Senate. He was expelled from the Communist Party in 1970 after he criticised the 1968 Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia.