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Bastille Day attacker was known to French police

Jul 15, 2016, 5:07 AM EDT
(Source: Sophie/flickr)
(Source: Sophie/flickr)

The man, who drove a truck through a packed crowd at Bastille Day celebrations in the southern French city of Nice, killing 84 people, was known to French police for his involvement in petty crimes but was not on terrorism watch list. Reports in local media revealed that the authorities seized an identity card from the truck, which identified the driver as a 31-year-old French-Tunisian citizen.

The fact that the killer was known to the authorities will be a big setback for those who are fighting terrorism in France, writes The Telegraph. The country’s intelligence services drew sharp criticism after a recent Paris parliamentary investigation into last year’s attacks highlighted “multiple failings” by the agencies.

Meanwhile, the investigation was handed over to counter-terrorism police early on Friday, reports The Guardian. Christian Estrosi, the regional president in Nice, said that the attacks aren’t prepared “alone” and called on the investigating agencies to focus on any accomplices.

Estrosi raised questions on the city’s preparedness for such attacks, saying that insufficient forces have been deployed in Nice. President Francois Hollande and Prime Minister Manuel Valls announced that they will visit Nice on Friday, as France observes three days of national mourning in the aftermath of the attack. 

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