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Paris Airport Attacker Snatched Assault Gun from Soldier

Police officers cordon off the access to the Orly airport, south of Paris, Saturday, March, 18, 2017. Photo: AP/ Thibault Camus
Police officers cordon off the access to the Orly airport, south of Paris, Saturday, March, 18, 2017.

March 18, 2017 03:40 PM

Paris prosecutor Francois Molins says French soldiers fired three bursts, eight rounds in all, to kill the attacker who took a member of their patrol hostage at Paris' Orly Airport and wrested away her assault rifle.
    
Molins said the attacker held a pistol to the soldier's head in the Saturday morning attack and used her as a shield. Contrary to earlier reports by French officials, Molins says the attacker did wrench away her powerful military-grade assault rifle and wanted to use it to shoot people at the busy Paris airport.
    
Speaking Saturday night at a news conference, the prosecutor said a Quran was among the items later found on the body of the attacker, Ziyed Ben Belgacem.
    
Molins said the French-born 39-year-old was flagged for suspected radicalism during a previous spell in prison. Molins also said the attacker yelled that he wanted to die in the name of Allah and "whatever happens, there will be deaths."

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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