News

Suspect in Bloody Meat Cleaver Attack Confirmed as Islamic Terrorist

Combined Shape

The chief suspect in a double stabbing in Paris told investigators he carried out the attack in anger over caricatures of Muhammad recently republished by satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo, a judicial official said Saturday.

Two people were wounded and seven people are in custody after Friday’s attack with a meat cleaver outside the newspaper’s former offices in eastern Paris, which counterterrorism authorities are investigating as an Islamic extremist attack.

Charlie Hebdo lost 12 employees in an al-Qaida attack in 2015 by French-born extremists who had criticized the Muhammad cartoons.

The newspaper, which routinely mocks religious figures of all kinds, decided to republish the caricatures the day before the trial into the 2015 attacks opened earlier this month.

The publication drew threats from militant groups as well as criticism from Muslims in multiple countries.

Trending:
Texas Rangers Investigating After Angry Man Kills 2 Sheriff's Deputies in His Yard

Questioned by investigators, the chief suspect acknowledged carrying out the attack and said he sought to target Charlie Hebdo because of the caricatures, according to an official close to the investigation.

The suspect had been arrested a month ago for carrying a screwdriver, but wasn’t on police radar for Islamic extremism, Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin said. He said the screwdriver was considered a weapon, but did not explain why.

The suspect arrived in France three years ago as an unaccompanied minor, apparently from Pakistan, but his identity was still being verified, the minister said.

Seven others were detained in the aftermath of Friday’s attack, but one has been released, the official said. Five of those in custody were detained in a residence where the suspect is believed to have lived.

Are you concerned about the threat of Islamic extremism?

The two people wounded in Friday’s attack were a woman and a man working at the Premieres Lignes documentary production company who had stepped outside for a smoke break.

Company co-founder Luc Hermann said they remain hospitalized Saturday, but their condition was “reassuring.”

Prime Minister Jean Castex, visiting Paris police headquarters Saturday, pledged to step up the fight against terrorism, saying “the enemies of the republic will not win.”

The interior minister conceded that security was lacking on the street where Charlie Hebdo was once headquartered, and ordered special protection for all “symbolic sites,” noting in particular Jewish sites around the Yom Kippur holiday this weekend.

A Jewish grocery store was targeted days after the Charlie Hebdo newsroom massacre, in what authorities say were coordinated attacks.

Related:
Caught on Live TV: Israeli Basketball Game Interrupted by Islamist Terrorist Attack

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →






We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

Tags:
, , , , , ,
The Associated Press is an independent, not-for-profit news cooperative headquartered in New York City. Their teams in over 100 countries tell the world’s stories, from breaking news to investigative reporting. They provide content and services to help engage audiences worldwide, working with companies of all types, from broadcasters to brands.
The Associated Press was the first private sector organization in the U.S. to operate on a national scale. Over the past 170 years, they have been first to inform the world of many of history's most important moments, from the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and the bombing of Pearl Harbor to the fall of the Shah of Iran and the death of Pope John Paul.

Today, they operate in 263 locations in more than 100 countries relaying breaking news, covering war and conflict and producing enterprise reports that tell the world's stories.
Location
New York City




Conversation