Paris attack suspect stopped, released by French police – report

2015-11-16 11:37

Paris - One of the suspects in the Paris terrorist attacks was stopped by police driving through northern France but not detained, a report said Sunday, as security forces carried out more raids in the suburbs of the capital.

Salah Abdeslam, 26, was stopped in a car with two others amid tightened border controls on Saturday after the attacks that killed 129 people, the newspaper Le Monde reported late Sunday.

Belgium, where he was already known to the authorities, has since issued an international arrest warrant for him.

His brother Brahim Abdeslam, 31, blew himself up on the Boulevard Voltaire, near the Bataclan concert venue, on Friday night, news agency AFP reported. He was a French citizen and resident in Belgium.

A third brother Mohamed Abdeslam was among seven people detained for questioning in Brussels. The brothers were not on French intelligence files, the report said.

Authorities believe that three coordinated teams of assailants armed with Kalashnikovs and explosive vests carried out the attacks late Friday, including at the Bataclan and a football stadium. The Islamic State militant group claimed responsibility for the attacks.

French authorities raided the north-eastern Paris suburb of Bobigny and questioned locals late Sunday, AFP reported, saying further details were unavailable.

Police also raided several areas in the southern French city of Toulouse, near the former home of Mohamed Merah, who attacked French Muslim soldiers and a Jewish school in March 2012, killing seven people, the agency said.

Officers seized a weapon and some cannabis, and took three or four people in for questioning, the report said, citing an unnamed police source.

Hospital services said late Sunday that three injured people died in the Paris attacks, but officials later said those were already included in the death toll of 129.

France launched airstrikes Sunday against the Islamic State in its stronghold of al-Raqqa in Syria, in what Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said was a reaction to the Paris attacks.

French planes dropped 20 bombs, destroying a commando position where munitions were stored and a training camp for terrorists, AFP said.

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