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France knife attack suspect to be hospitalised: source

By AFP

May 27, 2024 06:59 PM


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A Moroccan accused of wounding four people in a knife attack on the metro in the French city of Lyon, will be transferred to a psychiatric hospital, a source said on Monday.

The 27-year-old man was detained after allegedly injuring four people, including a 17-year-old, in the eastern city on Sunday afternoon.

Law and order is a major issue in French politics ahead of next month's European elections and the latest attack sparked a new wave of fierce reactions from the far right.

The suspect, who has been sectioned several times for psychiatric problems, had been ordered to leave France two years ago, officials said.

The lives of the four victims are not in danger. Two were stabbed in the abdomen and a third in the arm, according to a police source.

The most seriously wounded person was a 17-year-old from Guinea, according to police.

Several shocked witnesses received psychological support, regional authorities said.

The regional prefect Fabienne Buccio said on Sunday the suspect was a Moroccan national with "serious" mental problems.

"Without the intervention of the police, things could have been even more serious", she said.

He had been the subject to an expulsion order issued in 2022, she added.

Prosecutors opened an investigation into "attempted homicide".

A police source said that there was "no evidence" to suggest a terrorist motive at this stage.

The head of the far-right RN party, Jordan Bardella, blasted the authorities for not deporting the attacker.

"The same dysfunctions, the same attacks, the same insecurity," he said on X. "The failure of the government continues."

In mid-May, French police shot dead a man armed with a knife and an iron bar suspected of an attempted attack in the northern city of Rouen.

The dead man was an Algerian whose application to reside in France for health treatment had been rejected and who was wanted for deportation, authorities said.


AFP


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