Election Security 'Fully Mobilized' After Paris Attack

Sources say suspect was detained earlier this year
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 21, 2017 6:03 AM CDT
Updated Apr 21, 2017 6:33 AM CDT
Paris Suspect Was Detained This Year for Threatening Police
This photo provided by the AP on the condition that its source not be revealed, shows Karim Cheurfi.   (Uncredited)

Police say the gunman shot dead after killing a policeman and wounding two others in Paris Thursday was a 39-year-old man already known to authorities as a potential Islamist radical, the BBC reports. Three of his family members have been taken into custody and another man suspected of having links to the attack has surrendered to police in Belgium. Official sources tell the AP that the gunman was detained in February for threatening police then freed. He was convicted in 2003 of attempted homicide in the shooting of two other police officers, say the sources, speaking on condition of anonymity because authorities have not publicly disclosed the man's identity.

France began picking itself up Friday from the attack, which was claimed by ISIS, with President Francois Hollande calling together the government's security council and his would-be successors in the presidential election campaign treading carefully before voting this weekend. Prime Minister Bernard Cazeneuve says the government has reviewed its already extensive election security measures and it is "fully mobilized" in the wake of the attack. He says "nothing must hamper this democratic moment, essential for our country." Candidates, who are banned from campaigning after Friday at midnight, canceled or rescheduled final campaign events ahead of Sunday's first-round vote. (More France stories.)

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