Troops serving in a particular 7,000-strong power referred to as Sentinelle set as much as guard weak areas in terror-hit France responded to the stabbings and shot useless the attacker, whose identification stays unknown.French Inside Minister Gerard Collomb mentioned a couple of dozen witnesses had been being questioned.”This act could possibly be terrorist in nature however presently we can not affirm that,” he added.
“I used to be on the esplanade simply in entrance of the station,” Melanie Petit, an 18-year-old pupil, instructed AFP. “I heard somebody shout ‘Allahu Akbar’ and I noticed a person who appeared to be dressed all in black.”
Later, ISIS’s Amaq propaganda company cited a “safety supply” saying: “The executor of the stabbing operation within the metropolis of Marseille… is from the troopers of the Islamic State.”
‘Managed panic’ Closely armed police sealed off and evacuated the ornate rail terminus within the bustling coronary heart of France’s second-biggest metropolis, stopping all practice visitors on a few of the nation’s busiest strains.
The most recent deaths got here with France nonetheless on excessive alert and below a state of emergency following a string of assaults in recent times by extremists linked to the ISIS group or Al-Qaeda.
Since 2015, a complete of 239 folks have been killed in France by jihadists, in response to an AFP depend earlier than Sunday’s incident.
After the lunchtime assault, anti-terror prosecutors mentioned they’d opened an investigation into “killings linked to a terrorist organisation” and the “tried killing of a public official”.
Travellers across the station described “managed panic” as safety forces evacuated passengers and appeared for doable accomplices, whereas one other witness mentioned white sheets had been positioned over the our bodies of the victims.
The 2 victims remained unidentified however had been each “round 20 years previous,” a police supply mentioned.
Their assailant was recognized to the authorities for a string of widespread legislation offences and had “no papers on him,” the supply added.
He was recognized by his fingerprints after being shot useless.
Collomb mentioned that video surveillance footage confirmed the assailant attacked the primary sufferer, then fled — solely to return and kill the opposite lady.
Minute’s silence at soccer match
The incident got here solely days after the ISIS launched a recording of what it mentioned was its chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi urging his followers to strike their enemies within the West.
France has deployed troops and its air power to the Center East and is a number one associate within the US-led worldwide coalition combating ISIS in Iraq and Syria, the place the jihadists are being pushed again.
The nation has suffered a number of main terror assaults since 2015, together with on satirical journal Charlie Hebdo in January of that yr adopted by an assault on Paris bars and the Bataclan live performance corridor by gunmen 10 months later.
In Good in July 2016, 86 folks had been killed when an extremist drove a truck into crowds after a fireworks show on Bastille Day.
A minute’s silence was noticed in Good on Sunday night, forward of a soccer match between Good and Marseille.
Since November 2015, the nation has been in a state of emergency which provides the federal government and safety forces larger powers to fight extremists and launch anti-terror raids.
Controversial safety legislation
New centrist President Emmanuel Macron has vowed to finish the state of emergency with a brand new and controversial safety legislation that can make lots of the provisions of the emergency regime everlasting.
He tweeted that he was “deeply angered by this barbaric act,” and shared the ache of the households of associates of the victims.
Regardless of criticism from rights teams that the legislation reduces judicial oversight over the actions of the police, the decrease home of parliament is ready to vote on a primary draft of the laws on Tuesday.
French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe vowed: “We won’t decrease our guard.”