Paris stabbing: Germany in shock after death of national
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said he was "shocked" on Sunday (3 December), a day after a knife attack near the Eiffel Tower claimed the life of a 23-year-old German-Filipino tourist. The assailant, who also wounded two people, was arrested: Armand Rajabpour-Miyandoab, a 26-year-old French-Iranian, was known to the French authorities as a radical Islamist with an "unstable" mental state.
Police view securing access to the Bir Hakeim bridge, Saturday, Dec. 2, 2023, in Paris, after a knife attack that claimed the life of a German-Filipino tourist. REUTERS - STEPHANIE LECOCQ
By: RFI Follow
The German Interior Ministry was the first to speak on Sunday, a few hours after the attack that occurred on Saturday evening in Paris between the Quai de Grenelle and Bir Hakeim, near the Eiffel Tower. This "Islamist attack (...) is an abominable crime," Faeser said in an interview with the Funke media group. Germany's interior minister sent her thoughts "to the family and friends of the person killed, as well as to the other injured in this horrific act."
A couple of German tourists were hit: the 23-year-old man, who also has Filipino citizenship, died after being stabbed. The woman who accompanied him "was not physically attacked" but is "extremely shocked," French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin said.
Also armed with a hammer, the assailant also attacked two men, a 60-year-old Frenchman and a 66-year-old Briton. The French Minister of Health, Aurélien Rousseau, said on France 3 that these victims "are today in good health" physically, suffer from "superficial trauma" but that the "psychological trauma will be immense".
Germany is fighting side by side with France against Islamist terrorism. Our security services work closely together," Faeser added. Shortly afterwards, the German chancellor also spoke. "I am shocked by the terrorist attack in Paris that killed a German and injured several people. Our thoughts are with the injured, the families and friends of the victims. This once again highlights the reasons why we must fight against hatred and terror," Scholz wrote on X (ex-Twitter).
Ich bin bestürzt über die terroristische Attacke in Paris, bei der ein Deutscher getötet und mehrere Menschen verletzt wurden. Unsere Gedanken sind bei den Verletzten, Familien und Freunden der Opfer. Wieder wird klar, warum wir uns Hass und Terror entschlossen entgegen stellen.
— Bundeskanzler Olaf Scholz (@Bundeskanzler) December 3, 2023
The assailant, a man with a "very unstable profile, very impressionable"
Arrested on Saturday evening by police officers who had to use a stun gun, the assailant is in custody at the anti-terrorist section (SAT) of the Paris criminal brigade. Armand Rajabpour-Miyandoab is a 26-year-old French-Iranian, born in Neuilly-sur-Seine (Hauts-de-Seine) to Iranian refugee parents. A security source described him to Agence France Presse as a man with a "very unstable profile, very impressionable". He had already been arrested in 2016 by the Directorate General of Internal Security (DGSI) for a plan of violent action in La Défense, the business district west of Paris.
The man was sentenced to five years in prison for conspiracy to commit an act of terrorism, with one year suspended and three years' probation. He had been undergoing psychiatric medical treatment throughout his detention and after his release in 2020. He was placed under judicial supervision and under Micas, an administrative system with measures to prevent terrorist acts. "The first few months were encouraging," he seemed to have "detached himself from religion" after his release, according to a security source.
Since his release from prison, the individual had been living with his parents in Essonne and was still being monitored for significant psychiatric disorders. As of March 2022, he had stopped his medication in agreement with his doctor, according to a source close to the investigation. Despite a care order from a judge in 2022, doctors did not consider it necessary to resume care and did not identify any psychiatric dangerousness under the terms of the latest report of April 21, 2023, according to the same source.
I extend my deepest condolences to the family and loved ones of the German national who died this evening in the terrorist attack in Paris, and my thoughts are with emotion with those who are currently injured and being treated.
My most sincere thanks to the forces of...
— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) December 3, 2023
Three members of the assailant's entourage arrested
Armand Rajabpour-Miyandoab is registered in the Automated Judicial Register of Terrorist Offenders (Fijait). According to Gérald Darmanin, the perpetrator of the attack said "Allah akbar" several times and told the police, moments after his arrest, that he "could no longer bear that Muslims were dying, both in Afghanistan and in Palestine". He also reportedly said that he "resented what was happening in Gaza and that France would be complicit in what Israel was doing." He posted a video on social media claiming responsibility for his attack, according to police and security sources.
Three "members of the entourage" of Armand Rajabpour-Miyandoab are currently in police custody, the National Anti-Terrorism Prosecutor's Office said on Sunday. Anti-terrorism prosecutor Jean-François Ricard will hold a press conference on Sunday at 19:30 p.m., the National Anti-Terrorism Prosecutor's Office (PNAT), which is in charge of the investigation, announced. In addition, a security meeting was held at the end of the afternoon in Matignon around Élisabeth Borne, at the request of Emmanuel Macron, in the presence of the Minister of the Interior Gérald Darmanin, the Minister of Justice Éric Dupond-Moretti and the Minister of Health Aurélien Rousseau.
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