Paris knife attacker was French citizen born in Chechnya

An attacker who stabbed and killed a 29-year-old in central Paris on Saturday (May 12) night was a naturalised Frenchman born in Russia’s Chechnya region in 1997, judicial sources said on Sunday. Rough cut (no reporter narration).

The aftermath of a fatal attack on Paris on Saturday night (12 May).

A 29-year-old man was killed and four others are wounded by an attacker who shouted ‘Allahu akbar’ as he stabbed his victims.

He was then shot dead by police.

Judicial sources say the assailant was born in Russia’s Chechnya region but had obtained French citizenship.

His parents are being held for questioning by police, a source said.

A government spokesperson said the attacker was categorized as a ‘fiche S,’ an indication used by officials to flag people who may be a threat to national security.

The Islamic State says it was behind the attack, without providing evidence.

France has been on high alert following a string of attacks over the past three years, the deadliest of which was in Paris in November 2015 when 130 people were killed on attacks targeting the city’s nightlife.

An onlooker at the scene, Sarah Gousse, said:

“I was in the kitchen, I was bringing food out and then we heard gun fire, two gun shots, we didn’t know if it was the police or if it was someone else and I dropped to the floor and I felt like I was there for like five minutes, and the whole restaurant, we all dropped to the floor and so the customers in the window and then we just kind of stayed on the floor for a while.”

French President Emmanuel Macron said France would “not yield an inch to the enemies of freedom,” praising and praised police for “neutralizing the terrorist”.