PARIS, FRANCE – A man previously jailed for plotting an Islamic terrorist attack has been arrested after a stabbing spree in Paris that left a German citizen dead and two more individuals injured. The suspect was reported to have been released from prison in 2020.
The chilling announcement was made by French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin late Saturday. The arrested suspect, a French citizen in his mid-20s, was said to be upset over how “many Muslims are dying in Afghanistan and in Palestine” and seemed to consider France as an accomplice, according to reports by multiple news agencies.
Quoted saying “Allahu Akbar” (God is great) during the attack by the Associated Press, the individual has been condemned by French President Emmanuel Macron, labeling Saturday’s incident as “a terrorist attack.”
The man had served four years for plotting an attack back in 2016. Hailing from the Paris suburb of Neuilly-Sur-Seine, the culprit had been released from prison in 2020. He was reportedly under surveillance and receiving psychiatric treatment, and was residing with his parents in the Essonne region, to the south of Paris. “This person was ready to kill others,” underscored Darmanin.
The attack suspect lunged at a German couple with a knife just after 9 p.m. on the Quai de Grenelle, close to the Eiffel Tower, resulting in a 23-year-old man of German-Filipino citizenship succumbing to his injuries. Following his knife rampage, the suspect crossed to the other side of the River Seine, attacking two more people with a hammer. Quick police response led to his halt, using a taser to immobilize him.
Commenting on the situation, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock labeled the violent act as a “suspected Islamist attack.” The event has further heightened the terror alert that has been in place in France since teacher Dominique Bernard was fatally stabbed in Arras by a suspected radicalized Islam extremist in October.