3 Dead in France Knife Attack, Prez Says ‘Won’t Give in to Terror’

Among those who were killed were two women aged 60 and 44, and a 55-year-old man who was a church employee.

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Among those who were killed were two women aged 60 and 44, and a 55-year-old man who was a church employee.
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A man armed with a knife killed three people at a church in the French city of Nice on Thursday, 29 October, in what is the second such incident in the country this month.

Among those who were killed were two women aged 60 and 44, and a 55-year-old man who was a church employee.

Response Will be ‘Firm & Implacable’

Prime Minister Jean Castex raised France’s security alert to its highest level, and issued a statement saying that the response to the attack would be “firm and implacable.”

Addressing the media from the scene of the incident, French President Emmanuel Macron said that he will be stepping up the deployment of soldiers from around 3,000 currently to 7,000 to protect key French locations like places of worship and schools, according to Associated Press.

France will not give in to terror and will not “give up on our values”, Macron said after Thursday’s incident.

The killings reportedly took place less than a kilometre from the site where in 2016, an attacker had driven a truck into a Bastille Day crowd, leaving dozens dead.

Suspect Arrested, Identified as Tunisian Migrant

The mayor of Nice, Christian Estrosi, said the suspect behind the attack had been arrested.

“The suspected knife attacker was shot by police while being detained, he is on his way to hospital, he is alive,” Estrosi had told the media earlier, the news agency reported.

The attacker kept shouting “Allahu Akbar” even after he had been detained, the mayor added, as per the report.

The man has been identified as 21-year-old Tunisian migrant Brahim Aouissaoui.

He had come to Italy's Lampedusa island on 20 September and was put under quarantine before being released and ordered to leave Italian territory, The Guardian reported. Subsequently, the 21-year-old came to France in early October, according to sources cited by AFP.

Apart from the knife used in the attack, Associated Press reported that a bag belonging to Aouissaoui also contained another two unused knives.

‘Enough is Enough’

“Enough is enough,” Estrosi had said on Thursday, “It’s time now for France to exonerate itself from the laws of peace in order to definitively wipe out Islamo-fascism from our territory.”

French prosecutors, speaking to AFP, had said that terror probe has been opened into Nice attack. Meanwhile, Al Jazeera reported that streets had been sealed at the site of the attack and near the Notre Dame church.

The attack comes less than a month after a French middle school teacher was beheaded. The attacker said he wanted to “punish” the teacher for showing children cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad.

Meanwhile, in Saudi Arabia, a man was arrested in Jeddah after attacking and injuring a guard at the French consulate. The French Embassy said the security guard was alive but hospitalised.

(With inputs from Reuters, AFP, Associated Press and Al Jazeera)

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