Video emerges of Notre Dame 'terrorist' hammer attack

Frederick Owens
June 8, 2017

An assailant wielding a hammer attacked Paris police guarding Notre Dame Cathedral on Tuesday, crying "This is for Syria!" before being shot and wounded by officers outside one of France's most popular tourist sites.

Paris police say an operation around Notre Dame Cathedral is over, after an attacker who targeted police with a hammer was shot and injured.

A former USA ambassador to the United Nations was among the hundreds of people held inside Notre Dame Cathedral after a hammer-wielding man attacked police and was shot by an office.

It shows tourists milling around the famous landmark before the assailant launches himself at a group of police, knocking one officer to the ground and attempting to hit him in the head.

Farid Ikken is a 40-year-old Algerian jihadist who lived in Sweden and worked as a journalist.

France's state of emergency has been criticized by Amnesty International which claimed in its latest report that the measures curbs peaceful protests and erodes human rights in the country.

In total, more than 230 people have been killed in a wave of attacks in France either claimed by or inspired by Islamic State over the past two-and-a-half years. "It's not the person we knew'".

The video in which the man pledges allegiance to IS was found by police who searched the apartment he was renting in Cergy outside the French capital, the source said. France is part of the US-led worldwide coalition fighting IS and has carried out air strikes against militants in Syria.

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The suspect's thesis director at the University of Lorraine, where he enrolled in 2014, said he had shown "no outward sign of an excessive adherence to Islam". During his time in Sweden, Ikken had several stints with both established media, such as Swedish Radio or Uppsala Nya Tidning and up-and-coming "norm-critical" media, such as Fria Tidningen, Ikken's supervisor at Université Panthéon-Assas, professor Arnaud Mercier, said in an interview with French TV channel LCI.

Reportedly, Farid Ikken was also married to a Swedish woman, Swedish newspaper Expressen reported. Something is happening outside we don't know what it is. "He just prayed like everyone else", the nephew said.

French government spokesman Christophe Castaner told RTL radio that police quickly classified Tuesday's hammer attack as a "terrorist act" because of "the words he said".

Tuesday's incident came three days after extremists used a van and knives to crush to kill eight people enjoying a night out in London, three of them French.

President Emmanuel Macron, portrayed by rivals as weak on security during the presidential campaign, ordered the task force to be set up last month to steer France's multiple security agencies from his Elysee Palace offices.

Paris is under high security after a string of Islamic extremist attacks in recent years.

At least 600 people were blocked inside the iconic 12th-century church while police first secured the streets around it, then combed the pews while visitors sat with their hands raised for the check.

Other reports by Free-Prsite

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