Syrian Refugee Targets Children in Horrific Playground Knife Attack: Police


A Syrian refugee went on a stabbing rampage Thursday at a playground in Annecy, France, injuring four toddlers and two adults, according to news reports.

Three of the victims, including two preschool-age children, were hospitalized with life-threatening injuries.

“A video of the attack, taken by a bystander and verified by Reuters, showed the assailant jump a low wall into a children’s playground and repeatedly lunge at a child in a stroller, pushing aside a woman who tries to fend him off,” Reuters reported.

Many Twitter users attempted to share the video of the attack but complained that Twitter appeared to be censoring the posts almost as soon as they went up.

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“He clearly targeted the babies,” a witness identified only as Ferdinand told BFM-TV, according to Reuters.

Another witness identified only as George said, “Mothers were crying, everybody was running.”

The site of the attacks was LePaquier Park, a lakeside park in the picturesque town nestled in the French Alps.

One of the injured children is British, and another is Dutch, officials said.

A 31-year-old Syrian man was taken into custody on an attempted murder charge, according to Reuters.

At a news conference after the incident, local prosecutor Line Bonnet-Mathis said, “There was no apparent terrorist motive,” the BBC reported.

French Prime Minister Élisabeth Borne called the event a “terrible thing” and said, “We are all terrifically shocked by this.”

Officials said the suspect, whose name was not released, recently entered France legally and applied for asylum there after living as a refugee in Sweden for 10 years. He left a wife and a 3-year-old daughter in Sweden.

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“In an application last year for refugee status in France, he said he was a Syrian Christian,” the BBC reported. “During the incident, the attacker invoked the name of Jesus Christ.”

At the news conference, Borne said, “This person has no criminal record and neither does he have any kind of psychiatric record,” CBS News reported.

French President Emmanuel Macron posted remarks on Twitter calling the incident an “attack of absolute cowardice.”

“The Nation is in shock,” he added in the translated post. “Our thoughts are with them as well as their families and the emergency services mobilized.”

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Lorri Wickenhauser has worked at news organizations in California and Arizona. She joined The Western Journal in 2021.
Lorri Wickenhauser has worked at news organizations in California and Arizona. She joined The Western Journal in 2021.