Paris, Dec 3 (EFE). – France’s anti-terrorism prosecutor, Jean-François Ricard, confirmed on Sunday that Armand Rajabpour-Miyandoab, the suspected killer of a German tourist near the Eiffel Tower on Saturday, left a video in which he claimed to belong to the Islamic State (IS).
The video was on an X (formerly Twitter) account opened in mid-October, where he also posted about Hamas and Palestine.
According to the prosecutor, in the video Rajabpour-Miyandoab “spoke in Arabic and presented himself as a fighter for the Islamic State (…) of a branch operating from Afghanistan… he also gave his support to the jihadists operating in Africa, Iraq, Syria, Pakistan and Yemen”.
During the press conference, Ricard explained that the young man, who is also suspected of injuring two other people with a hammer in Saturday’s attack, had converted to Islam in 2015 when he was 18.
The suspect’s mother, an Iranian political exile, had been concerned about her son’s behaviour since mid-October. She said he had become “increasingly self-isolated”.
The prosecutor confirmed that the 26-year-old suspect, who was born in the wealthy Paris suburb of Neuilly-sur-Seine, had also been in contact in the past via social media with the killer of Professor Samuel Paty, Chechen Abdoullakh Anzorov, 18, who was killed by police after beheading the teacher in 2020.
Rajabpour-Miyandoab had already served four years in prison for a planned attack in the La Défense business district (west of Paris) in 2016, and was under “medical supervision” until April 2023 because of his mental health problems, Ricard said.
The public prosecutor added that “one of the conclusions to be drawn” is that “there must be obligations regarding psychiatric care”.
Since April, Rajabpour-Miyandoab has been under surveillance by the French secret services because of his Islamic fundamentalist profile.
The public prosecutor confirmed that other members of the attacker’s entourage were in police custody. According to Le Parisien, they are his parents and sister.
In cases of suspected jihadism, it is common for the French authorities to detain members of the suspect’s family or close circle in order to obtain information or find out if they themselves are involved.EFE