on the steps of Marseille train station by a man shouting ‘Allahu
held for them in the town of Eguilles, southern France. Villagers
gathered to sign a book of condolences to the two women.
and released the day before the attack, and used seven fake identities
in previous encounters with police, officials said Monday.
working to determine his true identity and whether he had direct links
to the Islamic State group, which claimed responsibility for Sunday’s
stabbing. The assailant was killed by soldiers immediately after the
attack, the latest of several targeting France.
taken during seven previous incidents registered by police since 2005,
Paris Prosecutor Francois Molins told reporters.
said. The man’s most recent arrest occurred in the Lyon area Friday –
just two days before the train station stabbing.
and the charges dropped, Molins said. He added that local authorities
had no reason to hold him further based on the ID he gave them – a
with the explanation, on Monday ordered a probe of the circumstances
that led police to free the man, who attacked and killed the young women
a day later. The report is due by week’s end, a ministry statement
used hard drugs and was divorced, according to Molins, the prosecutor.
It’s not clear if the attacker had any connection to the victims – two
cousins who had met for a birthday celebration.
– Arabic for ‘God is great’ – and Molins said that’s one of the reasons
prosecutors opened a terrorism investigation. But no firm evidence has
surfaced linking the man to Islamic extremism.
for a few minutes on a bench outside the station, before jumping up and
stabbing one woman several times.
passer-by tried to intervene, Molins said. The man then tried to attack
soldiers patrolling the site, but they shot him dead with two bullets.
The suspect was found with two knives and a telephone, but no identity
papers, according to Molins.
house to search for more clues, said Yves Lefebvre of the Unite SGP