Terror suspects arrested over Lyon explosion
Affected Countries: france;
Police in Lyon on Monday arrested four suspects over last week’s explosion in the heart of the French city. Investigators are treating the blast as a possible terror attack.
“A suspect has been arrested,” French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner, wrote on Twitter. He later said a second man had been detained.
Lyon mayor Gerard Collomb, a former interior minister, said one of the suspects was an IT student student who was arrested as he disembarked a bus.
Later, French authorities said that a police raid was under way in the Oullins suburb south of Lyon, a few hours after the arrest of the IT student, reportedly a 24-year-old Algerian.
Interior Minister Castaner had told prefects in the country to step up security measures in places frequented by people, such as sports or cultural events following Friday’s attack. At least 13 people were wounded, including a young girl, but no fatalities were reported.
A man was caught on CCTV around 5.30 p.m. local time (1530 UTC) dropping off a package in front of a bakery on rue Victor Hugo, close to Place Bellecour, Europe’s largest pedestrian square. A police source said the package contained “screws or bolts.”
The Paris prosecutor’s office, which has jurisdiction over terrorist investigations in France, confirmed that one of the arrested men is the suspected bomber. He is accused of “attempted murder in relation with a terrorist undertaking” and “criminal terrorist association.”
Police had earlier described the suspect as a European or North African male in his early 30s, saying that he had fled the scene on a mountain bike.
President Emmanuel Macron called the explosion an “attack” but no group has claimed responsibility for the explosion.
France has been on high-alert since the “Islamic State” militant group launched a series of attacks across Paris, killing 130 people and injuring scores more.