Trump calls Paris attacks ‘sad’, says ‘peace loving’ countries do more

‘Open your eyes and see what is really going on’: Trump calls the Paris terror attacks ‘sad’ and demands ‘peace loving’ countries do more to stop them

  • President Trump reacts to Saturday night’s attack in Paris by ISIS-inspired man 
  • Chechen-born assailant ‘slashed throats of bystanders’ in the Opera district 
  • Khamzat Azimov killed one person and wounded four others, authorities said

President Donald Trump has called on countries to ‘open their eyes’ as he responded to Saturday’s terrorist attack in Paris.

‘So sad to see the Terror Attack in Paris,’ the president tweeted on Sunday, more than 24 hours after the incident.

‘At some point countries will have to open their eyes & see what is really going on.

‘This kind of sickness & hatred is not compatible with a loving, peaceful, & successful country! 

‘Changes to our thought process on terror must be made.’

President Donald Trump has tweeted in reaction to Saturday’s terrorist attack in Paris, calling it ‘sickness and hatred’

 In September 2017, after two dozen people were injured by a bomb in an Underground station in London, Trump tweeted: ‘Another attack in London by a loser terrorist. These are sick and demented people who were in the sights of Scotland Yard. Must be proactive!’

The tweet is relatively tame for Trump’s usual responses to jihadist-inspired attacks.

In September 2017, after two dozen people were injured by a bomb which exploded in the Parsons Green Underground station in London, Trump tweeted: ‘Another attack in London by a loser terrorist. These are sick and demented people who were in the sights of Scotland Yard. Must be proactive!’

In May 2017, after nearly two dozen were killed and hundreds were injured by a suicide bomber in Manchester, England, Trump used similar language, saying the perpetrators were ‘evil losers.’ 

Investigators are following the trail of a 20-year-old Frenchman born in Chechnya who rampaged through a festive Paris neighborhood slashing passers-by with a knife, raising anew the specter of terrorism in France after less than two months of calm.

Using a knife, the man identified as Khamzat Azimov killed one person and wounded four others in a festive area near Paris’ old opera house. 

Police shot him to death as he charged them, witnesses said. 

Less than 24 hours later, investigators were questioning three people – his parents and a friend.

This is the first image to be made public showing Khamzat Asimov, the Islamic State terrorist who launched a knife attack in Paris

ISIS quickly claimed responsibility for the Saturday night attack via its Aamaq news agency, saying Azimov was their ‘soldier’ acting in response to the group’s calls for supporters to target members of the U.S.-led anti-ISIS military coalition, a stock response.

France’s military has been active in the coalition since 2014.

On Sunday, Aamaq released a posthumous video said to show the attacker calling on Muslims in Europe to ‘take action in the land of disbelievers’ if they can’t travel to the crumbling caliphate in Iraq and Syria, which has been pounded by coalition forces. 

In the video, 20-year-old Khamzat Asimov explicitly declares his affiliation with the terrorist group while speaking in French

The knifeman can be seen speaking into his camera-phone in the middle of what seems to be a park as he tells his ISIS ‘brothers’ to ‘ stay strong’

Pictures from Twitter appear to show a man lying in the middle of a street after the knifeman went on a rampage in Paris, slashing at the throats of his targets

The attacker was shouting ‘Allahu Akbar’ – Arabic for ‘God is the Greatest’ – as he slashed throats at random. Pictured: Police at the scene after the brutal attack

The man said French citizens should pressure their government ‘if you want it (attacks) to end.’

SITE Intelligence Group, which monitors jihadi propaganda, obtained the video, which could not be independently authenticated. 

The young man’s face is covered, except for his eyes, with a black bandanna and the hood of his coat. 

The video was made outside amid trees and falling rain. French authorities had no comment.

Police detained Azimov’s parents in the northern 18th district of Paris and held a friend from Strasbourg in that city on the border with Germany in eastern France, French officials said. 

The friend was detained Sunday afternoon.

A security official said investigators searched the Paris residence of the parents. 

A heavy police presence remained at the scene of the attack which unfolded in central Paris yesterday as the Chechnya-born man went on a savage rampage 

Armed police swooped on the area close to the historic Opera Garnier opera house yesterday where they were able to bring a halt to the blood shed by shooting the assailant dead 

The man attacked several people with a knife, one of whom died, police said. Two were in serious condition and all the victims are in hospital

The initial attack took place on Rue Monsigny, in the 2nd arrondissement, where crowds were seen running away in panic 

The official wasn’t authorized to speak about the investigation and insisted on not being quoted by name.

French media reported that the family had lived in Strasbourg, and it wasn’t clear if the suspect moved to Paris with his parents.

Counterterrorism investigators want to know if the assailant had help or co-conspirators. 

The attacker killed a 29-year-old man and wounded four other people, one from Luxembourg, before police fatally shot him.

The suspect was on a police watch list for radicalism, a judicial official not authorized to speak publicly about the case told The Associated Press. 

But he had a clean criminal record and did not know his victims, Interior Ministry spokesman Frederic de Lanouvelle said.

THE DEADLY JIHADIST ATTACKS ON FRANCE THAT HAVE CLAIMED THE LIVES OF NEARLY 250 

Jihadist attacks have killed more than 245 people across France since the 2015 Charlie Hebdo shootings.

Here is a recap of incidents that have taken place in the past three years: 

2018 March 23: Gunman Radouane Lakdim killed four people in the southern towns of Trebes and Carcassonne, including policeman Lieutenant-Colonel Arnaud Beltrame who was hailed as a hero for taking the place of a hostage. Lakdim was shot dead by police after a stand-off.

2017 October 1: A 29-year-old Tunisian cries ‘Allah Akbar’ and kills two young women with a knife at the main train station in the southern city of Marseille Ahmed Hanachi is shot dead by soldiers on patrol. His attack is claimed by the Islamic State (IS) group.

2017 April 20: A 39-year-old ex-convict shoots dead an on-duty policeman and wounds two others on Paris’ Champs-Elysees avenue Gunman Karim Cheurfi is killed by police and a note praising IS is found next to his body, with the group claiming responsibility.

A sea of floral tributes to the victims of the deadly attack on the Promenade des Anglais seafront which killed 84 people in Nice in July 2016 



From left: Larossi Abballa, 25, who knifed a police officer to death in Paris in June 2016, Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel, who killed 86 people and injured more than 400 when he ploughed a truck through a large crowd in Nice in July 2016 and Radouane Lakdim, who killed four people in the southern towns of Trebes and Carcassonne, including policeman Lieutenant-Colonel Arnaud Beltrame who was hailed as a hero for taking the place of a hostage

2016 July 26: Two teenagers slit the throat of an 85-year-old priest in front of five worshippers at his church in the western town of Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray Abdel Malik Petitjean and Adel Kermiche, both aged 19, are killed by police. The murder is claimed by the IS. The teenagers had sworn allegiance to the group in a video.

2016 July 14: A Tunisian ploughs a truck through a large crowd gathered for Bastille Day fireworks on the Promenade des Anglais in the Mediterranean city of Nice. The attack kills 86 people and injures more than 400. The driver, Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel, 31, is shot dead by security forces. IS claims responsibility.

2016 June 13: Larossi Abballa, 25, uses a knife to kill a police officer and his partner at their home in Magnanville, west of Paris, in front of their young son Abballa is killed by a police SWAT team, but has already claimed the murders on social media in the name of IS.

2015 November 13: France is hit by the worst terror attacks in its history. IS jihadists armed with assault rifles and explosives strike outside a France-Germany football match at the national stadium, Paris cafes, and the Bataclan concert hall in a coordinated assault that leaves 130 people dead and more than 350 wounded.

2015 August 21: Passengers prevent a bloodbath on a high-speed Thalys train from Amsterdam to Paris, tackling a man who opened fire on travellers. He was armed with a Kalashnikov assault rifle, an automatic pistol and a box-cutter. The gunman is identified as 25-year-old Moroccan national Ayoub El Khazzani, known to intelligence services for links to radical Islam.

2015 June 26: Frenchman Yassin Salhi, 35, kills and beheads his boss and displays the severed head, surrounded by two Islamic flags, on the fence of a gas plant in Saint-Quentin-Fallavier in southeastern France. He tries to blow up the factory, but is arrested. He commits suicide in his jail cell.

2015 April 19: Sid Ahmed Ghlam, an Algerian IT student, is arrested on suspicion of killing a woman who was found shot dead in her car, and of planning an attack on a church in the Paris suburb of Villejuif. Prosecutors say they found documents about Al-Qaeda and IS at his home, and that he had been in touch with a suspected jihadist in Syria about an attack on a church.

2015 February 3: A knife-wielding man attacks three soldiers guarding a Jewish community centre in Nice. The 30-year-old assailant, Moussa Coulibaly, is arrested. In custody, he expresses his hatred for France, the police, the military and Jews.

2015 January 7-9: Two men armed with Kalashnikov rifles storm the Paris offices of satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo killing 12 people. A policewoman is killed just outside Paris the following day, while a gunman takes hostages at a Jewish supermarket, four of whom are killed. The attackers are killed in separate shootouts with police, but not before claiming allegiance to Al-Qaeda and the IS. 

Witnesses reported hearing the man shouting ‘Allahu akbar,’ the Arabic phrase for ‘God is great,’ during the attack that happened at about 9pm in a lively area near the Opera Garnier.

The assailant obtained French nationality in 2010, the Interior Ministry spokesman said. 

He was born in November 1997 in the largely Muslim Russian republic of Chechnya, where extremism has long simmered. 

Chechens have been among the numerous foreign fighters in Syria and Iraq, some joining the Islamic State cause early in the fighting.

Chechnya’s president weighed in after the rampage, perhaps striking a nerve by insisting Sunday that France bears responsibility for the knifings. 

He said Azimov held a Russian passport only until he was 14 years old.

A forensic officer investigates at the scene last night. The Islamic State claimed responsibility, according to the SITE monitoring group

‘I consider it necessary to state that all responsibility for the fact that Khamzat Azimov went on the road of crime lies completely with the authorities of France,’ Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov said. 

‘He was only born in Chechnya, and his growing up, the formation of his personality, his views and persuasions occurred in French society.’

France has counted the most foreign fighters in Syria and Iraq of all European nations, many – but not all – of North African origin.

At home, ISIS sympathizers have killed more than 200 people in France in recent years – 130 in an attack on revelers in 2015. 

The last attack occurred in March near the touristic southern town of Carcassonne where an extremist with a gun killed three people, two in a supermarket, including an officer who exchanged himself for a hostage.

Like the Carcassonne killer, the Paris assailant was listed in a nationwide database of thousands of people suspected of links to radicalism, according to the judicial official. 

Extremists behind multiple attacks in France in recent years have turned out to be on the watch list.

The attacker targeted five people and then fled, according to Paris police and a witness. 

When police officers arrived minutes later, he threatened them and was shot dead.

Several witnesses said the attacker ran directly toward police.

Bar patrons and opera-goers described surprise, confusion and panic as the drama unfolded, with people crawling under restaurant tables, and ordered to stay inside while the police operation was underway in the 2nd arrondissement, or district, on Paris’ Right Bank.

‘I was working in the restaurant and suddenly I heard a woman screaming … he came and attacked her,’ recalled Jonathan, a witness working nearby who wouldn’t provide his last name. 

‘That’s when the panic started. Everyone started screaming and trying to reach our restaurant. … The attacker just kept walking around with his knife in his bloodied hands.’ 
 

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