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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Monday's Toulouse, France Murderer Belongs to al-Qaida

Nadene Goldfoot
On Monday, a motorcyclist with helmet shot at close range and killed 3 children and a Rabbi at a Jewish school in Toulouse.  The killer, who turns out to be a Muslim, Mohammad "Meharin, had then called French TV stations after the  attacks and said he had avenged French participation in the Afghan war, the "suffering" of Gaza Palestinians and the Sarkozy government's ban on the veil in public places for Muslim women."  Police suspected he had videotaped his killings, and it turns out he had. 

Toulouse police stormed a house at dawn after a 12 hour siege where this al Qaeda gunman, Mohammed Merahin, 24 yr old  French Algerian  was hiding.  He shot and injured 3 policemen before admitting he committed the crimes for al Qaeda.  This killer trained in Pakistan and Afghanistan.  He had been active in Forsane Alizze (Knights of Pride) , a 2 year old  extremist Islamic organization which was only outlawed in February for support of terrorism but had been identified before that with al Qaeda.  His 4 Jewish victims were buried in Jerusalem.

His home was only 2 km from the school.  He had also killed 2 French paratroopers and wounded a 3rd last Thursday.  His brother and his girlfriend were also arrested as his accomplices.  At the same time the police stormed his house, security police made swoops on extremist Muslim hideouts all across France. 

Claude Gueant, French Interior Minister, said that the man was a suspect early on in the killings of the paratroopers.  The police had asked Merahin's mother to take up contact with him as part of police negotiations but had refused.  French foreign Minister Alain Juppe flew to Israel with the victims and attended the funerals as a mark of French-Israeli solidarity. 

Oregonian newspaper, March 21, 2012, page A6, Police exchange shots with suspect claiming al-Qaida ties
DEBKA-Toulouse (Muslim) school killer reported captured in police raid

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