Friday 9 December 2016

Mother of Tunisian gunman: He wouldn't kill a mouse

Scott D'Arcy, Press Association

Published 05/07/2015 | 16:09

Seifeddine Reguiz
Seifeddine Reguiz

THE mother of the Tunisian beach gunman has revealed her son once refused to kill a mouse because he "couldn't kill anything".

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Radhia Manai, 49, said she believed Seifeddine Rezgui, who was killed by security forces after the rampage in the Sousse tourist resort, had been "brainwashed" into carrying out the attack.

Rezgui opened fire on holidaymakers sunbathing on the beach on Friday June 26, shooting 38 people dead.

The bodies of all 30 Britons killed in the attack have been repatriated and inquests into their deaths are continuing to open today.

His mother told the Sunday Times: "When they told me my son had killed all these people I said no, it's impossible. I couldn't believe, I can't believe it. Once there was a mouse in the house and I asked Seifeddine to kill it and he refused saying, 'I can't kill anything'.

"God bless the victims, all those people and their poor families, and I feel so sorry but I want to tell them it wasn't my son who did this, it was a different Seifeddine.

"I think someone was pressuring my son to do this. Maybe they said, 'Do this or we'll kill you'. My son is a victim like all the others. I want to know who is the head of all this, who did this to him and I want them to go to prison or be killed."

Mrs Manai said she hoped the British authorities "will get to the bottom of this" as she described the 23-year-old student as a music and football fan.

According to the paper, his parents first learned of the massacre when police arrived to question them at their home in Gaafour, more than 100 miles from Sousse.

Tunisian authorities have questioned several suspected associates of Rezgui, who had links to the terror group Islamic State (IS).

They have said he acted alone during the rampage but had accomplices who supported him beforehand, providing him with weapons and logistical support.

Tunisian president Beji Caid Essebsi said an investigation was under way into security failures and armed tourist police would be on beaches.

A state of emergency has been declared in the north African country in the wake of the attack.

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