Nice church attack: 21-year-old Tunisian man charged over fatal stabbings

WION Web Team
Nice, France Published: Dec 07, 2020, 08:46 PM(IST)

Macron visits Basilica of Notre-Dame in Nice Photograph:( AFP )

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Anti-terrorist prosecutors said in a media statement that an examination of Aouissaoui's mobile phone had also revealed images linked to the Islamic State group

The chief suspect in the fatal stabbings of three people in a church in the French city of Nice was charged on Monday with their murder, anti-terrorism prosecutors said.

Brahim Aouissaoui, a 21-year-old Tunisian national, was shot and seriously injured by police inside the French basilica after the October 29 attack. He was charged after his condition in the hospital improved, allowing police to question him.

The knife-wielding Tunisian national shouting "Allahu Akbar" (God is Greatest) beheaded a woman and killed two other people in a church in the French city of Nice in October before being shot and taken away by police.

Also read: Nice terror suspect gave no indication he was contemplating violence

Chief anti-terrorist prosecutor Jean-Francois Ricard said that Brahim Aouissaoui had entered the city by train early on October and made his way to the church, where he stabbed and killed the 55-year-old sexton and beheaded a 60-year-old woman.

The attack came just under two weeks after a middle-school teacher in a Paris suburb was beheaded by an 18-year-old attacker who was apparently incensed by the teacher showing a carton of the Prophet Mohammad in class.

Also read: Tunisia opens investigation into France terror attack suspect

To this end, President Emmanuel Macron said France would deploy thousands more soldiers to protect important sites such as places of worship and schools, as the country's security alert was raised to its highest level.

Anti-terrorist prosecutors said in a media statement that an examination of Aouissaoui's mobile phone had also revealed images linked to the Islamic State group. The prosecutors did not say what they were or how they were linked to the group.

The middle school teacher, Samuel Paty, was killed by a young man of Chechen origin who, before the attack, recorded a message saying he wanted to punish Paty for showing pupils caricatures of the Prophet Mohammad in a civics class.

Until now, the only connection prosecutors had drawn between the Paris attack and the Nice church attack was the method employed. In both cases, the attackers used a large knife and beheaded, or tried to behead, their victims.

The knife attack in Nice prompted the government to raise the security alert for all French territory to its highest level and President Emmanuel Macron said more soldiers would be deployed to protect key sites such as places of worship and schools.

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