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Spill-over of Teacher Killing: another Terror-Type Attack in France, Three Killed, a Woman Beheaded

NEW DELHI, Oct 29: In yet another suspected terror attack allegedly by fanatic Muslims, a knife-wielding person killed three persons, including beheading a woman, before he was over-powered by the police in Nice city in France on Thursday.

The authorities did not rule out the attack in nice to be linked with the killing of the school teacher in Paris earlier. The attack in Nice was suspected to be carried by the same group as the knife-wielding attacker was shouting “Allah-o-Akbar” when he attacked his victims and continued to shout the slogan even in the police custody.

The incident was first reported by Nice’s mayor, Christian Estrosi, who described the attack as terrorism and said on Twitter it had happened near Notre Dame church, the largest in the city and located in the city’s main shopping thoroughfare.

Estrosi said the attacker had repeatedly shouted the phrase “Allah-o-Akbar” even after he had been detained by police.

One of the people killed inside the church was believed to be the church warden, Estrosi said, adding that a woman had tried to escape from inside the church and had fled into a bar opposite the 19th century neo-Gothic building. ​ “The suspected knife attacker was shot by police while being detained, he is on his way to hospital, he is alive,” the mayor said.

“Enough is enough,” Estrosi said. “It’s time now for France to exonerate itself from the laws of peace in order to definitively wipe out Islamo-fascism from our territory.” He said the victims had been killed in a “horrible way.”

Media reports from Nice said the police had cordoned off the Church area. While confirming decapitation of the woman, the Police said three people were confirmed to have died in the attack and several were injured. The French anti-terrorist prosecutor’s department said it had been asked to investigate.

In Paris, lawmakers in the National Assembly observed a minute’s silence in solidarity with the victims. A representative of the French Council for the Muslim Faith strongly condemned the attack. “As a sign of mourning and solidarity with the victims and their loved ones, I call on all Muslims in France to cancel all the celebrations of the holiday of Mawlid,” he appealed.

“The methods match, without doubt, those used against the brave teacher in Conflans Sainte Honorine, Samuel Paty,” he said, referring to a French teacher beheaded earlier this month in an attack in a suburb of Paris, the mayor said.

Paty, middle school teacher, was stabbed to death by a man of Chechen origin. The attacker had said he wanted to punish Paty for showing pupils cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad in a civics lesson.

Officially it was not immediately confirmed the motive behind the Nice attack or if there was any connection to the cartoons, which Muslims consider to be blasphemous.

Since Paty’s killing, French officials – backed by many ordinary citizens – have re-asserted the right to display the cartoons, and the images have been widely displayed at marches in solidarity with the killed teacher.

That has prompted an outpouring of anger in parts of the Muslim world, with some governments accusing France president Emmanuel Macron of pursuing an anti-Islam agenda.

In a comment on recent beheadings in France, Russia said on Thursday it was unacceptable to kill people, but also wrong to insult the feelings of religious believers.

Meanwhile, giving an indication that the Muslim wrath against France may be spreading elsewhere, a Saudi man was arrested in Jeddah after attacking a guard with a “sharp tool” at the French consulate on Thursday, news agency reports said.

(Manas Dasgupta)