A man has been shot dead after trying to seize a soldier’s weapon at Paris’s Orly airport, French officials say.
The 39-year-old assailant, who has not yet been publicly identified, was apparently a radicalized Muslim on a security watch list who had been previously arrested on drug and theft charges, according to law enforcement sources who spoke with Reuters.
The airport shooting follows a similar incident last month at the Louvre museum in central Paris.
Mr Molins said that Mr Belgacem was on a watch list after being “radicalised” during a spell in detention from 2011- 2012 and had to report to police regularly over preliminary robbery charges a year ago.
Belgacem has several armed robbery convictions.
Intelligence agents searched his home in Garges-les-Gonesse, north of Paris, for evidence of Islamist sympathies, but reportedly found nothing.
One officer was injured by the gun fire – but was reported to be recovering well from the incident.
The attacker then carjacked a vehicle south of Paris before making his way to the airport, Paris prosecutor’s spokeswoman Agnès Thibault-Lecuivre told CNN.
Identity documents found on the attacker matched those presented by the man who fired at police in Garges-les-Gonesse. the stolen auto was found at Orly.
President François Hollande said the incident demonstrated that the ongoing national security operation – which has placed extra security forces at airports, train stations and other public places – is “absolutely essential” to keep people safe.
Le Drian had said the soldier kept hold of her weapon. He tried again to use her as a shield, but a third shot killed him at 8:25 am, Molins said.
Belgacem’s father and brother, as well as a cousin, have been detained for questioning.
Flights at Paris’ Orly airport were returning to normal on Sunday a day after a man triggered a major security alert and travel chaos when he attacked a soldier before being shot dead.
The attack also resulted in the diversion of air traffic at Paris’ second largest airport leaving several passengers stranded for hours. His house was among dozens searched in November 2015 in the immediate aftermath of suicide bomb-and-gun attacks that killed 130 people in Paris.
At around 8:30 a.m. (3:30 a.m. ET), Belgacem headed inside the airport’s southern terminal where he nearly immediately encountered a military patrol, the prosecutor said.
“I said I didn’t forgive him ‘because you hurt a policeman'”. Orly South Terminal remains closed but is expected to re-open later today.
Phone records showed Belgacem had called a relative before the Orly attack telling them, “I have done something stupid”.
Despite emergency security measures imposed two years ago, fresh assaults put security issue on the spotlight during a presidential campaign where the far-rightists, advocating for though security and anti-immigration proposals, eye to make a surprise and snatch the first place in the race to the Elysee Palace.