Terror probe launched in France knife attack

French counter-terrorism prosecutors open investigation into knife attack south of Lyon last weekend.

Elad Benari, Canada ,

French police officer
French police officer

French counter-terrorism prosecutors have opened a judicial investigation after a knife attack south of Lyon left two people dead this past Saturday, The Associated Press reported Wednesday.

In a statement, prosecutors said charges will be pressed against the assailant, who was arrested by police minutes after the attack as he was kneeling on the sidewalk praying in Arabic.

An initial investigation suggested that the assailant acted alone, prosecutors said.

Magistrates are considering charges of murder or attempted murder with terrorist intent.

Two people were killed and five were injured in Saturday's attack in the small town of Romans-sur-Isere, which was in lockdown amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Residents were carrying out their permitted daily shopping at the time of the attack, according to AP.

Prosecutors did not identify the suspect, but described him as a Sudanese born in 1987 who arrived in France in 2016 and obtained refugee status the next year.

France has been hit by a number of attacks claimed by the Islamic State (ISIS) in recent years, the biggest one being the attack in November of 2015 in which 129 people were murdered.

More than 250 people have been killed in total in France since the start of 2015, when 12 people were murdered in an attack on the offices of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo attack.

Following the Charlie Hebdo attack, a man linked to ISIS shot and killed a policewoman in a Paris suburb before taking hostages at the Hyper Cacher kosher supermarket the following day, killing four more people.

In January, a 22-year-old radicalized man stabbed one person to death and injured two others in a park in the Paris area.

(Arutz Sheva’s North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Passover in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)