84 OLD PRIEST BEHEADED IN CHURCH IN FRANCE – UPDATE
A 84-year-old priest, Father Jacques Hamel (pic-L), was killed, on Tuesday 07/26/2016, and four other people taken hostage by two armed men who stormed his church in a suburb of Rouen Normandy, northern France,
One nun who witnessed the attack, told BFM-TV that the men forced Fr Hamel to his knees and recorded the killing, speaking Arabic as they did so. She says she fled as they were preparing to kill him.
The two attackers, who said they were from the so-called Islamic State (IS), slit Fr Jacques Hamel’s throat during a morning Mass, officials say.
Police later surrounded the church, in St-Etienne-du-Rouvray, and shot dead both hostage-takers.
One attacker. Identified as Adel Kermiche (pic-L), 19, is reported to have been known to French police. Adel Kermiche First tried to leave for Syria in March 2015. His family, his father is a professor, reported him missing and he was arrested in Germany, using his brother’s identity card. He had tried, again, to enter Syria, in 05/2015, but was turned back at the Turkish border. He spent time in jail up to 03/2016 and released on condition he wear an electronic tag and move back in with his parents.. According to Kermiche’s bail conditions, he was allowed to go out unsupervised between 8.30 am and 12.30 pm every day, the period of time he committed the attack .His partner was, most likely Abdel Malik Petitjean (pic-B) from Aix-les-Bains in eastern France.Three of the hostages were freed unharmed, but one remains in a critical condition, according to interior ministry spokesman Pierre-Henri Brandet.
Three of the hostages were freed unharmed, but one remains in a critical condition, said French interior ministry spokesman Pierre-Henri Brandet.
Police special forces raided a house in Saint-Etienne-du-Rovray in the aftermath of the attack, and French prosecutors earlier said one person had been arrested.
Within hours of the attack, the IS-linked Amaq news agency, said “two IS soldiers” had carried out the attack. The Islamic State (IS) has released, on Wednesday 07/27/2016 night, a video it says shows the two assailants, pledging allegiance to the group.
The two men are filmed speaking in Arabic and referring to IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. One holds a piece of paper on which the IS flag is printed.
France’s Le Monde newspaper also reported that French security officials received a tip-off, on Friday 07/22/2016, from an unnamed foreign intelligence partner that an individual was planning an attack in the coming days. A photograph of the individual was provided but no identity, and French police were hunting for the man in the run up to the attack. He is suspected to be the second attacker Abdel Malik Nabil Petitjean, 19.
“Following DNA tests, it emerged that the terrorist has been identified as Abdel Malik Nabil Petitjean,” a source in the Paris prosecutor’s office said, on Saturday 07/28/2016 . Petitjean had been on a watch list as a potential security threat since 06/2016 after trying to enter Syria from Turkey.
** The IS-linked Amaq news agency, on Friday 07/29/2016, released a video showing one of the French church, Abdel Malik Petitjean, emerging as the leading figure in the attack, dressed in a green striped t-shirt, speaking into the camera from what appeared to be a home speaking mostly French and threatening the country . Petitjean directly addresses French President Francois Hollande and Prime Minister Manuel Valls. He, basically, urged Muslims in France to carry on more attacks with all means available .
** Two men have been placed under formal investigation over the murder of a priest in a Normandy church, including a cousin of one of the killers, according to French authorities on Monday 08/01/2016 morning .
Farid K, 30, a cousin of attacker Abdel Malik Petitjean, was arrested on suspicion of “terrorist association”. The other man, Jean-Philippe Steven J, 20, probably a convert, was put under formal investigation for allegedly attempting to travel to Syria in 06/2016 with Petitjean.
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