Thursday 26 April 2018

Suspect in car attack on French troops shot after chase

Police at the scene where the supect was shot and arrested. Photo: Getty
Police at the scene where the supect was shot and arrested. Photo: Getty

Catherine Marie

French police shot and arrested a suspect in a dramatic motorway chase yesterday after a car had rammed into soldiers outside a barracks in a Paris suburb, injuring six of them.

The suspected terror attack is the latest in a string to have hit France since January 2015, killing more than 230.

The soldiers were hit by a BMW which drove down a quiet street in the upmarket western Paris suburb of Levallois-Perret.

It accelerated, rammed into them and then sped away.

"I heard a huge crash, which I thought was the sound of scaffolding being put up," Thierry Chappe, a resident in a building opposite, said.

Police later gave chase to the vehicle on a motorway north of Paris and shot and wounded the suspect, a man in his late 30s. He was then arrested.

Interior Minister Gerard Collomb described the act as "deliberate" and carried out by a "man on his own".

He spoke after visiting three of the injured soldiers, along with defence minister Florence Parly.

All six were taken to hospital, but none has life-threatening injuries, they said.

The troops were part of the 7,000-strong anti-terrorism Sentinelle force set up in January 2015, under which soldiers patrol the streets and guard high-risk areas, such as tourist sites and religious buildings.

Mr Collomb said the forces had been attacked on six different occasions since 2015.

The country has been under a state of emergency since major attacks in Paris in November 2015.

The Paris prosecutor's office said its anti-terrorism unit had launched a probe into "attempted killings... in relation to a terrorist undertaking".

Isil has repeatedly targeted France because of its participation in the US-led international coalition fighting the jihadist group, with French jets carrying out air strikes in Syria.

Irish Independent

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