The IS group claimed the attack through a statement posted by its Amaq propaganda agency late Sunday, according to the SITE monitoring group. It quoted a security source as saying: "The executor of the stabbing operation in the city of Marseille ... is from the soldiers of the Islamic State."
An illegal immigrant who used up to eight identities as he travelled around France was arrested and then released last Friday before stabbing two cousins to death in a suspected terrorist attack.
The man shouted ‘Allahu Akbar’ as he murdered the 17-year-old student and 21-year-old nurse outside St-Charles station in the southern city of Marseille on Sunday afternoon.
Shocked passers-by looked on in horror as he used a butcher’s knife to carry out the attack, before he was himself gunned down by a military patrol on anti-terrorism duties.
On Friday the attacker – who was a North African of either Algerian or Tunisian origin aged between 30 and 35 – was arrested in Lyon for shoplifting. He had no papers on him and was in ‘an irregular situation in Europe’, so giving the authorities a chance to place him under judicial control.
‘Instead they let him go, and the next they heard about him was in connection with a double murder,’ said an investigating source in Marseille. ‘Forensic evidence has linked him with the incidents in Marseille and in Lyon, but his actual name and other details remain in dispute. He was known to police for his links to drug-related crimes, but had used up to eight identities over the past few months.’
The source said the murderer, who was not on a terrorist watch list, had no links with radicalisation, despite Islamic State claiming responsibility for his station attack.
One of his victims was from Lyon, and had been visiting her cousin in Marseille to celebrate a birthday before they were killed.
I hope those who released him not only lose their jobs but are charged with criminal negligence and made to pay reparations to the families.