A number of Folks, Together with Youngsters, Are Stabbed in an Assault in France

A knife-wielding man stabbed a number of folks, together with kids, at a park in southeastern France on Thursday, the authorities stated, in an assault that President Emmanuel Macron known as “completely cowardly.”

“Youngsters and one grownup are between life and dying,” Mr. Macron said on Twitter in regards to the assault in Annecy, a metropolis of about 130,000 folks. “The nation is in shock.”

The inside minister, Gérald Darmanin, said on Twitter {that a} suspect had been arrested.

The assault occurred simply earlier than 10 a.m. at a well-liked lakefront park in Annecy. Anthony Le Tallec, a former skilled soccer participant who ended his profession within the metropolis, stated he witnessed the assault. In an Instagram story from the park, the place he filmed police and emergency providers on the scene, he stated that he had been jogging on the lakefront when he noticed dozens of individuals working within the different course.

“There was a mother who informed me: ‘Run! Somebody is stabbing everybody. He stabbed kids,’” Mr. Le Tallec stated.

He then moved out of the way in which because the assailant, being chased by the police, ran towards him, he stated. The attacker rushed as much as an older man close by and stabbed him, Mr. Le Tallec stated.

“It’s loopy to see this in Annecy,” he stated.

A girl who stated she had witnessed the assault informed a neighborhood radio station that the assailant had jumped over a park fence and stabbed a small woman and a child in a stroller. “I actually thought it was a joke, however by no means,” the girl, who was not recognized, told France Bleu radio. “After I heard the mom’s scream, I began to run.”

Antoine Armand, a lawmaker for the Haute-Savoie space, which incorporates Annecy, known as the stabbing “an assault in opposition to our soul.”

France’s decrease home of Parliament noticed a minute of silence after information broke of the assault, briefly interrupting fiery debates amongst lawmakers on Mr. Macron’s pension overhaul regulation. Yaël Braun-Pivet, the speaker of the decrease home, stated the French prime minister was touring to Annecy due to the stabbings.

Terrorist assaults have receded from the headlines in France in recent times, however the nation continues to be on excessive alert, and the authorities say that the police and intelligence providers repeatedly foil plots.

Though the motive for the stabbings on Thursday was unknown, France was struck by large-scale Islamist terrorist assaults in 2015 and in 2016, adopted by a string of smaller however nonetheless lethal shootings and stabbings in subsequent years, usually carried out by lone assailants.

In April, Mr. Darmanin said on the BFMTV news channel that French safety forces had thwarted 41 terrorist assaults since 2017, together with a couple of dozen since 2020, and that the majority of them had been deliberate by folks with radical Islamist views.

Assaults particularly focusing on kids are uncommon in France.

In 1993, a masked gunman held toddlers hostage for 2 days at their kindergarten in a suburb of Paris, however he finally launched them unhurt earlier than he was killed by law enforcement officials. And in 2012, a radical Islamist gunman went on a taking pictures spree in and across the southwestern metropolis of Toulouse, killing a rabbi and three kids at a Jewish college. The police fatally shot him a number of days later.

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