A gunman who opened fire on a high-speed train from Amsterdam to Paris watched a jihadist video on his mobile phone before carrying out the attack.
In a wide-ranging diplomatic speech Tuesday, Hollande said his country remains “exposed” to violent extremism and “this aggression is new proof that we should prepare ourselves for other assaults”.
He walked out of a toilet cubicle topless and armed before being wrestled to the floor and subdued by two young American off-duty servicemen, their friend and a 62-year-old British consultant.
A fifth man, French-American Mark Moogalian, who tried to take away the gunman’s rifle before the other four got involved, will receive his own Legion of Honor when he recovers from his injuries.
Paris Prosecutor Frederic Molins said the man detained in connection with the attack, Ayoub El-Khazzani, was being investigated for “attempted murder in connection with a terrorist enterprise”. His arsenal included nine cartridges of 30 bullets each, a handgun, an East German assault rifle, and a box cutter, he said.
A lawyer representing El Khazzani had previously said her client was shocked and surprised “to the point of being amused” following his arrest.
In questioning, El-Khazzani initially stated he had discovered a bag of weapons the night time earlier than in a Brussels park and deliberate to make use of them to rob passengers, in accordance with Molins.
But his explanation grew less and less plausible, the prosecutor said, and the suspect eventually stopped speaking to investigators at all.
Sacramento’s KCRA-TV showed Anthony Sadler walking off a commercial plane at Sacramento worldwide Airport, accompanied by his parents.
France is on heightened alert after 20 people were killed by Islamic extremists in Paris in January. The fourth American hero is still in intensive care.
Stone had his neck and thumb caught when he and his two close friends rushed Khazzani and prevented further bloodshed.
“His intentions were very clear”, said Alek Skarlatos, a National Guardsman. The U.S. ambassador to France, Jane Hartley, said he was “doing pretty well”.
The father of a suspected Islamist militant gunman overpowered by passengers on a high-speed train in France was quoted on Monday as saying he could not believe his son was a terrorist.
El-Khezzani’s lawyer, Sophie David, told Le Monde newspaper the gunman is ill-educated and emaciated, and told her he had spent the past six months traveling between Belgium, Germany and Austria, as well as France and Andorra.
Despite Khazzani’s claim that he had slept on a bench in Brussels in the days prior to boarding the train on August. 21, Molins said he had actually stayed with his sister in the Belgian capital, which was searched on Monday. “He’s a free spirit”.
“My position was, I’m not going to be the guy who dies sitting down”, Chris Norman told CNN’s “New Day” on Tuesday.