Date
17 October 2017
French police surround a BMW car with several bullet impacts at the scene where a man is suspected of ramming a car into a group of soldiers. Photo: Reuters
French police surround a BMW car with several bullet impacts at the scene where a man is suspected of ramming a car into a group of soldiers. Photo: Reuters

Car rams into soldiers in Paris suburb, suspect arrested

French police shot and arrested a man on Wednesday suspected of deliberately ramming his car into a group of soldiers in a Parisian suburb hours earlier, injuring six of them in what the government called a deliberate attack, Reuters reports.

Armed police from elite units tracked the fugitive for five hours after the attack before cornering him on a motorway in northern France and shooting him several times.

The suspect was unarmed when he was cornered by police some 260 km (162 miles) north of Paris where he had attacked the soldiers in the affluent suburb of Levallois-Perret, a judicial source said. There was no immediate word on his condition.

The man appeared to have lain in wait for the soldiers in a pedestrian zone near their base in Levallois-Perret on the northwestern edge of the capital where France’s domestic counter-terrorism agency is based.

He accelerated his BMW car into the troops, who were starting their patrol, when they were a few meters away, before speeding off and sparking a huge manhunt, Interior Minister Gerard Collomb said.

“This was a deliberate act, not an accident,” Collomb told reporters outside the hospital where the three more seriously injured victims were being treated.

He said a terrorism investigation had been launched.

The soldiers were part of Operation Sentinel, launched in the wake of Islamist attacks in Paris in early 2015. The Levallois-Perret attack was the 15th on troops and police in the last two-and-a-half years, many of them Islamic State-inspired.

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