France opens investigation into fatal stabbing of tourist near Eiffel Tower News
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France opens investigation into fatal stabbing of tourist near Eiffel Tower

French anti-terrorism prosecutors said on Sunday that they had opened an investigation into the fatal attack against a 23-year-old German-Filipino tourist near the Eiffel Tower in Paris on Saturday evening.

The attack took place at around 9 pm on Saturday. After killing the German-Filipino tourist with a knife, the attacker injured two other people, including a 60-year-old French national and a 66-year-old British national, with a hammer. French Minister of Health and Prevention, Aurélien Rousseau, confirmed that the lives of the injured were not in danger. The attacker has been arrested and is now in custody with the police.

The attacker is a 26-year-old French national with Iranian parents and was allegedly a radicalized by the Islamist State (IS). Since October 2023, he had been posting on social media platform X (formerly known as Twitter) numerous posts related to Hamas, Gaza and Palestine. In a pre-recorded video, he had pledged allegiance to IS. A police source told French media AFP that the attacker had already been arrested once in 2016 by the General Directorate of Internal Security (DGSI) for a planned violent action in La Défense and sentenced to five years of imprisonment in 2018. He was released in 2022 after four years of detention. According to the police source, the attacker was shouting “Allah Akbar” when committing the crime. He told the police that he “could no longer bear to see Muslims die, both in Afghanistan and in Palestine,” and that France was “complicit in what Israel was doing.” He had also posted a video online claiming responsibility for the attack.

French president Emmanuel Macron expressed his condolences to the family of the victim and called for the investigation into the matter so that “justice can be done in the name of the French people.” He also ordered Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne to hold a security meeting on Sunday, with the Ministers of Interior, Justice and Health. Borne said on social media that “we will not give in to terrorism.”