Crime & Justice

Kurds in France say Turkey behind deadly Paris shooting

Paris, Dec 23 (EFE).- The main organization representing Kurds in France said that the three people fatally shot Friday outside a Kurdish cultural center here were victims of a “terrorist attack” carried out on behalf of Turkey.

“In view of the political situation in Turkey, of the situation of the Kurdish people,” the killings must be seen as “political assassinations,” the spokesman for the Kurdish Democratic Council of France (CDK-F) told a press conference in Paris.

Agit Polat said that one of those killed was the leader of the French branch of the Kurdish Women’s Movement.

“That’s why it is political, that’s why it is terrorist,” he said, expressing surprise that French authorities are trying “to make people believe it’s the act of an isolated far-right militant.”

“The Kurdish community has never been the target of the extreme right in France,” Polat said.

The suspect, a 69-year-old with a criminal record, was detained and taken to hospital after suffering mild injuries during his arrest, Paris prosecutor Laure Beccau said.

Beccau said that the suspect had recently been provisionally released from prison having served time for using a sword to attack tents being used by migrants in Paris.

“The motive of racism forms part of the investigations,” the prosecutor told reporters.

The CDK-F called on the French government to “halt cooperation with Turkish intelligence.”

Police used tear gas against Kurds who were protesting as French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin briefed reporters near the crime scene and the CDK-F scheduled a mass demonstration in Paris for midday Saturday.

Friday’s violence came just weeks before the 10th anniversary of the murder in the same part of Paris of three Kurdish political activists, a crime that remains unsolved.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who faces an election next year, has ordered attacks on Kurds in Syria after accusing the Syrian Kurdish militias that battled Islamic State of being behind a bombing in Istanbul last month.

EFE lmpg/jt-dr

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