Terrorism not ruled out in fatal stabbing near Paris


FILE PHOTO: French police secure an area in Villejuif near Paris, France, January 3, 2020 after police shot dead a man who tried to stab several people in a public park. REUTERS/Charles Platiau/File Photo

January 4, 2020

PARIS (Reuters) – French investigators said they had not dismissed possible links to terrorism after a man went on a rampage with a knife in a park near Paris on Friday, killing one person and wounding two. Police shot the man dead.

“An act of terrorism cannot be ruled out just because a person has psychiatric problems, but our investigation is still ongoing,” French public prosecutor Laure Beccuau told a news conference on Saturday.

The prosecutor’s department said the attacker, identified only as Nathan C., was born in 1997 in Lilas, a northeastern suburb of Paris.

Religious texts including a copy of the Koran were found among his belongings, but there was no evidence that he had been influenced by radical Islamists, a department spokesman said.

The attacker had been admitted to hospital a few months earlier and was undergoing psychiatric treatment.

Paris has suffered major attacks by Islamist militants in recent years.

Coordinated bombings and shootings in November 2015 at the Bataclan theater and other sites around Paris killed 130 people – the deadliest attacks in France since World War Two.

(Reporting by Simon Carraud, Antony Paone and Sudip Kar-Gupta; editing by James Drummond)

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